Net Zero Review launched to support UK’s world leading climate commitment

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The Net Zero Review, the first of its kind, will assess how the UK can maximise economic growth opportunities from its transformation to a green economy.

At its heart is a priority to ensure a fair balance of contributions from all those that will benefit, including considering how to reduce costs for low income households.

This review is a major step towards the UK achieving net zero emissions by 2050, after becoming the world’s first major economy to legislate to do so earlier this year.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, said:

The UK is leading the way on tackling climate change as the first major economy to legislate for net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. We must all play a part in protecting the planet for future generations.

This review is a vital next step in delivering that commitment, ensuring that we can end our contribution to global warming, while supporting growth and balancing costs, to avoid placing unfair burdens on families or businesses.

The review will also consider how to ensure we can cut our emissions without seeing them exported elsewhere. Everyone will have an important role in making the transition successful. The Treasury will consult widely, drawing on evidence from experts, as well as those that will be impacted.

A final report will be published in autumn 2020, ahead of the UK hosting the UN climate change conference in Glasgow in November next year.

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Clarke said:

I have championed the environment throughout my life and political career so its humbling to launch this unprecedented review into how we end the UK’s contribution to climate change.

Until recently people said that Net Zero was impossible, but this work is a giant step towards making it happen, enabling us to set out a roadmap for an economy that is cleaner, more efficient, and works for everyone, while preserving our planet.

Further information

Terms of reference for the Net Zero Review have been published.

On 27 June the UK became the first major economy in the world to legislate to end its contribution to global warming by 2050, increasing the ambition of our commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Climate Change Act 2008.

Between 1990 and 2017, the UK reduced its emissions by 42% while growing the economy by more than two thirds, and according to independent analysis from PwC, we reduced the carbon intensity of our economy faster than any other G20 country since 2000.

This review will complement existing government achievements on climate change, including:

  • quadrupling UK Renewable capacity since 2010. Low-carbon energy rose to just over 50% of our electricity generation in 2018 – a record high
  • installing 2.5 million energy efficiency measures in 2 million homes – saving carbon and delivering net household bills savings of £800 million each year
  • significant investment through the Clean Growth Strategy including £4.5 billion to support development of renewable and low carbon heating through the Renewable Heat Incentive
  • investing nearly £1.5 billion to support uptake in electric vehicles, including up to £78 million to support innovation in electric motor technology, and using the tax system to encourage the uptake of cars with low carbon dioxide emissions
  • pledging a £315 million fund at Budget 2018 to support businesses with high energy use to: cut their bills and emissions through increased energy efficiency and reduce their emissions by decarbonising industrial processes
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