Government fails to keep climate promises

A recent CCC report has highlighted the disconnect between the Government’s climate promises and its action, noting that, on their current path, Ministers will see the UK contribute to 2.7C in global warming by 2100.

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Green World

Responding to yesterday’s Climate Change Committee (CCC) report on the gulf between the Government’s promises on climate change and their action, Green Party co-leader Carla Denyer has called for a series of measures to be implemented.

The measures are as follows:

  • An end to fossil fuel expansion
  • A carbon tax to make polluters pay and send a clear market signal
  • Greater investment in public transport
  • Transfer £27bn earmarked for road-building to home insulation
  • A massive programme of retrofitting to make homes more energy efficient

The CCC report states that, at current rates, the UK is set to contribute to a global temperature rise of 2.7C by 2100. This figure, it says, could be reduced to just below 2C, but only if the Government agrees to tougher climate policies, and if other nations follow suit.

The CCC has produced a shortlist of recommendations to improve the UK’s environmental standing, including proposals to cut emissions by 78 per cent by 2035, and draw up agreements to significantly reduce ‘embodied emissions’ from major polluters such as steel and cement. Further, the committee recommends that the UK address embodied emissions from imported goods by imposing taxes on carbon-intensive imports.

The COP26 final agreement, the committee notes, gives the Government the ability to amend tax policy so that fossil fuels pay for the damage they have caused, and continue to cause, to the climate. The current tax system, the CCC asserts, lacks the efficiency to crack down on the most polluting sectors. 

Denyer commented: “The Government is making ambitious promises on carbon reductions, but this is largely hot air. Prime ministerial bluster is no substitute for practical action. In fact, their policies are taking us in the wrong direction, with new fossil fuel extraction planned, billions going into road-building, and an utter failure to ensure homes are energy-efficient.

“The public is demanding much greater action, including a carbon tax to make polluters pay, funding for public transport and walking and cycling, and a massive programme to retrofit our leaky homes. The Climate Change Committee’s report today makes clear the urgent need to close the gap between ambition and delivery."