Following on from the Sixth Carbon Budget in December 2020, on 20 April the UK government announced that it will set the world’s most ambitious climate change target into law to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels.
In December, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) published its much-anticipated Sixth Carbon Budget.
The CCC advised that the UK will need to deliver a 78% reduction by 2035 if it is to meet its long-term net-zero commitment. In comparison, the UK was originally targeting an 80% reduction by 2050 under the Climate Change Act.
The new target will become enshrined in law by the end of June 2021, following legislation introduced to Parliament in late April 2021.
In line with the recommendation from the CCC, this sixth Carbon Budget limits the volume of greenhouse gases emitted over a 5-year period from 2033 to 2037, taking the UK more than three-quarters of the way to reaching net zero by 2050. The Carbon Budget will ensure Britain remains on track to end its contribution to climate change while remaining consistent with the Paris Agreement temperature goal to limit global warming to well below 2°C and pursue efforts towards 1.5°C.
For the first time, this Carbon Budget will incorporate the UK’s share of international aviation and shipping emissions – an important part of the government’s decarbonisation efforts that will allow for these emissions to be accounted for consistently.
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