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A big welcome to a selection of articles from the latest Zero Carbon Britain newsletter. The whole newsletter is available here, and you can sign up to receive the ZCB newsletter straight into your inbox here.

The next phase of ZCB

We are excited to be planning a further research phase of the ZCB project. A welcome process of criticism, feedback and reflection, plus the emergence of new environmental technologies since publication, has clarified the way forward.

Specifically we would like to look how improved wind prediction might reduce emissions from back-up facilities.

We also intend to investigate the possibilities for using the Sabatier process to store energy when there is excess electricity in the grid. During this process the hydrogen released by electrolysis is combined with CO2 to produce methane, which could be stored or introduced into the gas grid.

The ZCB2030 Land Use section provoked a great deal of interest so further work has already been commissioned to expand on its ideas.

Finally, we will develop a piece of modular open-source, energy-modelling software that will allow many more people to understand, use and adapt the basic ZCB scenario.

ZeroCarbonBritain Day on 21st July

For the second year running we are planning a ZeroCarbonBritain Day in order to draw attention to the ideas in our report and the possibility of taking action to prevent unnecessary climate catastrophe.

ZeroCarbonBritain day is being co-organised by the Campaign Against Climate Change and this year will take place on 21st July. The idea so far is for groups to take action in their local areas to draw attention to ZCB and to draw their local MP’s attention to the solutions laid out in the report. Feedback from last year’s demonstration and actions can be found here.

A selection of news from the sectors addressed in ZeroCarbonBritain2030…

Emissions

According to DECC, in 2010 UK greenhouse gas emissions rose by 3.1% to an estimated 590.4mtCO2e. The government claims that this was caused by the cold winter last year, but the figures indicate that consumption of fossil fuels is increasing. Even by its own measurements the government is failing in its duty to reduce emissions, and this is without taking into account the added emissions from international flights and imported goods.

Climate science

How governments around the world sponsor wrecking the climate.

Lord Lawson’s climate sceptic think tank, the Global Warming Policy Foundation, has been served with a Freedom of Information request with regards to its donors in order to determine if they have vested interests in the fossil fuel industry, which they have hitherto denied. David Attenborough has also criticised Lawson for not looking at the facts on climate change.

The built environment

A new life-cycle analysis study proves what ZCB has been saying all along, that in the main, renovating old houses produces far less CO2 than knocking them down and building new ones.

Transport

A new breakthrough on batteries for electric vehicles could mean that they achieve a greater range than other vehicles.

World & UK renewables

On 28th December 2011, a record 12.2% of the UK’s electricity was produced by wind power, smashing the previous record of 10%. Onward and upwards!

World investment in ‘clean energy’ reached $260bn in 2011 and the US topped China again for the first time since 2008.

Policy and economics

There has been widespread confusion in government as to how the Feed-in Tariff for solar PV ought to be changed. CAT’s own information officer, Tobi Kellner, makes sense out of the recent furore.


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