Climate change: Government’s own advisers say it’s failing to deliver change fast enough
Written by Hitmix News on 24 June 2021
The government is failing to deliver on promises to dramatically cut the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions, according to its own climate advisers.
They warn ministers need to rapidly step up action, with every month of delay making it harder to meet legal obligations to reach net zero by 2050.
In a series of report cards on the government’s progress over the last year, the Climate Change Committee says that despite setting the right targets there’s still no detailed plan on how to replace millions of boilers, encourage people to drive electric and plant acres of trees.
Chris Stark, the committee’s chief executive, told Sky News there’s a gulf between the ambition and a willingness to take tough decisions that affect people’s lives.
“It is true the ambition of the country has changed in the last 12 months and that is useful.
“But unless it is being physically delivered, so the things that will drive us towards net zero, the changes we will see in homes, industry and transport, we can’t say we are credibly on track.
“The government has to change course.”
The climate advisers make 200 recommendations to the government.
They include judging all its policies against a “net-zero” test to ensure they are compatible with climate targets, and amending the Planning Bill to make sure new houses are low carbon and are adapted for rising global temperatures.
The advisers also say the government can’t shy away from encouraging people to fly less and eat less meat.
The committee said meeting the UK’s long-term legally-binding target to cut emissions to net-zero by 2050 would cost less than 1% of GDP a year, and could deliver a boost of 2% by 2035 as the UK builds back from the pandemic.
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Jess Ralston of the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit said a clear action plan could boost the UK’s credibility in the year that it hosts the UN climate summit.
“This year is the government’s chance to prove to the world that they are not just talking about this, they are delivering on it as well.
“Time is getting a bit thin.
“If we don’t take action now we risk falling to the back of the pack on tackling climate change. We also risk missing out on new life-long jobs in green industries, which are the future of the UK.”
The government denied it had been slow to deliver on climate action.
A spokesperson said: “Our forthcoming strategies on heat and buildings, hydrogen, transport and comprehensive net zero strategy this year will set out more of the very policies the Climate Change Committee is calling for as we redouble our efforts to end the UK’s contribution to climate change.”
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Sky News has launched the first daily prime time news show dedicated to climate change.
The Daily Climate Show is broadcast at 6.30pm and 9.30pm Monday to Friday on Sky News, the Sky News website and app, on YouTube and Twitter.
Hosted by Anna Jones, it follows Sky News correspondents as they investigate how global warming is changing our landscape and how we all live our lives.
The show also highlights solutions to the crisis and how small changes can make a big difference.