If the UK set a legally binding target to halve resource consumption by 2050, it could put itself on track to meet domestic nature and climate targets while also driving progress abroad. That is the key finding of a new report from think tank Green Alliance. Published today (29 March), the report is entitled ‘Targeting success: Why the UK needs a new vision for resource use’. The report outlines how the UK consumes natural resources at more than twice the rate considered sustainable. This calculation accounts for both finite resources, like fossil fuels, and renewable resources including plant-based materials from fast-growing crops. It highlights how reliant the UK is on imported resources, which come with embedded carbon from transport emissions and are often associated with emissions and nature loss abroad. On the latter, the report notes the IPCC’s assertation that resource use has fuelled 90% of nature loss globally to date, with agri-food alone responsible for 75% of deforestation by area size.
Edie 29th March 2021 read more »
The Climate Change Committee (CCC) has urged the government to not count international carbon credits in the UK’s Fourth Carbon Budget, arguing their use could ultimately make it more difficult for the nation to reach net zero emissions by 2050 and would muddy the UK’s record as a climate leader. In a letter sent to the Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng on Friday afternoon, CCC chairman Lord Deben warned counting international carbon credits towards the UK’s net zero aim could “impair the clarity” over the need to reduce emissions at home. The use of international credits could result in less strong signals to markets about the need to deliver low carbon investment at home, the letter states.
Business Green 29th March 2021 read more »
The majority of economists say that the benefits of reaching net-zero emissions by 2050 would outweigh the costs, a new survey suggests. Two-thirds of economists who answered the survey said that it was “likely” or “extremely likely” that the expected benefits of government targets for reaching net-zero emissions by 2050 would outweigh the expected costs. By comparison, 12 per cent said that it was “unlikely” or “extremely unlikely” that the benefits would outweigh the costs, 18 per cent said it was “still not clear” and 4 per cent said they had “no opinion”. In addition, 74 per cent of economists surveyed said they strongly agreed that “immediate and drastic action is necessary” to tackle the climate crisis.
Independent 30th March 2021 read more »