The Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) Fourth Carbon Budget is out (download link above), with a headline that the Coalition Government should target a 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (against 1990 levels) by 2030. They believe this to be possible with existing technology at a cost of less than 1% of GDP.
There’s plenty of interest in the support, not least a detailed yet succinct summary of the science. But for this blog’s purposes, p.111 is particularly useful. Noting that an updated Low Carbon Transition Plan has yet to be published, the report provides a list of policy intentions which chime with those proposed by the CCC:
- new car and van emission targets (through the EU)
- National Renewable Energy Action Plan intended to deliver 15% of UK energy being sourced from renewables.
- funding for Carbon Capture and Storage demonstration plants
- £860m for Renewable Heat Incentive
- funding for manufacturing facilities to support offshore wind and energy efficency technology
- funding for electric cars and other low-carbon vehicle technologies
- Sustainable Transport Fund for local authorities
- Green Investment Bank
Also of note is a mention for ‘localism’ as part of a wider cultural shift (p.122):
This scenario includes very high standards of insulation, limiting of internal building temperatures, major improvements in lighting and applicance efficiency, dietary changes, reduced need to travel resulting from improved land-use planning and a shift to localism.
‘Localism’ is used in a very broad way here; there is no discussion of the detail of CLG’s plans around the concept other than to emphasise “the importance of developing an integrated land-use and transport planning strategy to ensure that decisions on new residential and commercial developments fully account for transport emissions.” (p.182)
So the Budget doesn’t include any detail on local activity or implementation, but provides a good overview of the state of play in climate policy and the level of ambition required.