Labour has softened its pledge to find a path to net zero carbon emissions by 2030 after unions pushed for a target of significant progress rather than a firm commitment. The party’s autumn conference had passed a motion setting 2030 as the target for net zero emissions, but trade unions raised concerns about the risk to jobs and industry. Rebecca Long-Bailey, the shadow business secretary, insisted on Monday that the party would remain on the “pathway” towards net zero emissions by 2030, in line with the conference motion. However, sources present at Saturday’s clause V meeting finalising the party’s manifesto said the GMB trade union and some other union representatives had pushed for softer wording, aiming for progress rather than completion. One source said the aim in the manifesto would be for a “significant majority” of carbon emissions to be eradicated by 2030. Labour for a Green New Deal, which brought the motion, said it was happy with Long-Bailey’s pledge of a pathway towards net zero by 2030 and confident that the leadership was supportive of strong action on the climate crisis.
Guardian 18th Nov 2019 read more »
Labour has dropped a radical plan to end the UK’s contributions to climate change by 2030 and will stick to a target of achieving it “well before 2050”. Activists passed a motion at the party’s conference in September to dramatically speed up the date for net zero carbon emissions – pushing for inclusion in the general election manifesto. But Barry Gardiner, Labour’s shadow trade secretary, said that 2030 target would apply only to efforts to decarbonise power production. “What we will be doing is that we will have our power sector 90 per cent powered by renewables by 2030,” he said. “That is absolutely in line with achieving the overall target that we have set to make sure that, well before 2050, we have achieved the net zero.”
Independent 18th Nov 2019 read more »
Labour has shelved a radical plan to deliver net zero emissions by 2030, despite Party members backing the target in a motion passed by the party’s annual conference in September. The proposal was hailed as evidence of Labour’s commitment to delivering the world’s most ambitious decarbonisation programme, but it also sparked fierce criticism from businesses, trade unions, and political opponents, who warned such a rapid rate of decarbonisation was virtually impossible.
Business Green 18th Nov 2019 read more »
The UK’s progress towards its decarbonisation goals is slowing, threatening the country’s ability to meet its target of hitting net zero emissions by 2050, new research released by PwC reveals today. As the country’s main Parties prepare to unveil manifestos that will offer competing visions of how the UK can accelerate progress towards a net zero economy, PwC will today confirm that in 2018 the UK’s carbon intensity fell by 3.5 per cent, marking a sharp slowdown compared to the 6.5 per cent drop achieved year earlier. Crucially, the 3.5 per cent rate is also below the UK’s average annual decarbonisation rate, which stands at 3.7 per cent since 2000. The data suggests the UK is wildly off track from its net zero by 2050 commitment, which requires an annual improvement in carbon intensity of 9.7 per cent, according to PwC. The significant emissions cuts delivered by the UK economy over the past decade are largely thanks to the decarbonisation of the electricity system, particularly the phase out of coal power. But with coal power now operating as a tiny fraction of the power system, the government is under mounting pressure to speed carbon cuts in other areas such as transport, heating, industry, and agriculture. The PwC report also highlights how for every year where the decarbonisation rate remains below the target rate for delivering net zero, the required rate needed for the remaining years goes up.
Business Green 19th Nov 2019 read more »
The UK will have to deliver annual carbon intensity reductions of 10% to meet its net-zero legislation for 2050, up from less than 4% currently, according to a new study from professional services firm PwC.
Edie 19th Nov 2019 read more »
A key part of ‘net zero’, as is often pointed out, is not just the ‘zero’, but the ‘net’. For while rapidly cutting emissions is obviously crucially important, there is no credible decarbonisation pathway which eradicates anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions altogether. The economy will almost certainly continue to generate emissions into mid-century and beyond, and one way or another – be it via nature or technology – those emissions will therefore need to be offset to deliver net zero emissions and halt the risk of runaway climate change.
Business Green 18th Nov 2019 read more »
The Green Party of England and Wales will launch its election manifesto later with a pledge to reach net zero carbon emissions in the UK by 2030. The party says it would invest £100bn a year by 2030 as part of a “green new deal” to tackle climate change – to be mainly paid for by borrowing.
BBC 19th Nov 2019 read more »