In December last year, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) published its much anticipated Sixth Carbon Budget, covering the period between 2033-2037.
The budget has been described as the toughest yet, with the CCC advising that the UK will need to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 in order to meet its net zero commitments.
In comparison, the UK had originally been targeting an 80% reduction by 2050, under the Climate Change Act.
Last week, Boris Johnson announced the new target would be enshrined into law by the end of June 2021 and set out measures designed to achieve this – almost 15 years earlier than previously planned.
The target requires all new cars, vans, and replacement boilers to be zero carbon in operation by the early 2030s. Households will need to drastically reduce their carbon impact through better insulation and low-carbon heating technology, such as heat networks.
Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said:
“We want to continue to raise the bar on tackling climate change, and that’s why we’re setting the most ambitious target to cut emissions in the world.
The UK will be home to pioneering businesses, new technologies and green innovation as we make progress to net zero emissions, laying the foundations for decades of economic growth in a way that creates thousands of jobs.
We want to see world leaders follow our lead and match our ambition in the run-up to the crucial climate summit COP26, as we will only build back greener and protect our planet if we come together to take action.”
COP26 President-Designate, Alok Sharma, said:
“This hugely positive step forward for the UK sets a gold standard for ambitious Paris-aligned action that I urge others to keep pace with ahead of COP26 in Glasgow later this year. We must collectively keep 1.5 degrees of warming in reach and the next decade is the most critical period for us to change the perilous course we are currently on.
Long term targets must be backed up with credible delivery plans and setting this net zero focused Sixth Carbon Budget builds on the world leading legal framework in our Climate Change Act. If we are to tackle the climate crisis and safeguard lives, livelihoods and nature for future generations, others must follow the UK’s example.”