CAT welcomes Labour Party energy policy – but urges action now

CAT welcomes the Labour Party’s ambitious new energy policy, but urges that action be taken now to avoid dangerous levels of climate change.

In a speech to the Labour Party conference on Wednesday, Jeremy Corbyn is expected to confirm the party’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to zero by the middle of the century.

Plans set to be announced include a radical increase in electricity from renewable energy, including 13,500 onshore and offshore wind turbines and the installation of thousands of solar panels, as well as investment in home insulation. Labour say the plans will create 400,000 ‘green jobs’.

Adrian Ramsay, CAT Chief Executive, welcomed the announcement – but said that zero emissions needs to be achieved sooner than mid century if the UK is to show global leadership in the battle against runaway climate change.

“CAT has been calling for increased ambition from all politicians, and this announcement recognises the need for rapid decarbonisation.

“To meet the goals of the global climate agreement and avoid runaway climate change the world needs to be at zero emissions by mid century. The UK has a moral duty to lead the world into a post-carbon future so we should be setting an earlier timeframe. We benefited from being one of the first countries to experience the industrial revolution and now have the opportunity for substantial social, economic and environmental benefits by leading a green revolution.

“CAT’s Zero Carbon Britain research has shown that the UK can achieve a zero carbon future using technology available today – and that doing so will mean huge opportunities for society, such as addressing fuel poverty, creating new jobs and building a modern, clean public transport system.”

Zero Carbon Britain: a scenario for net zero greenhouse gas emissions

Zero Carbon Britain is the flagship research project from the Centre for Alternative Technology, showing that a modern, zero-emissions society is possible using technology available today.

Since its inception in 2007, the Zero Carbon Britain project has offered the hard data and confidence required for visualising a future where we have risen to the demands of climate science. It shows:

  • We can provide a reliable energy supply for the UK with 100% renewable energy sources and flexible carbon neutral back up – without fossil fuels, nuclear power, or gambling on the promise of future technology.
  • We can grow the vast majority of the food we need for a healthy, low carbon diet, and manage our land to capture carbon, nurture biodiversity and increase the health and resilience of our ecosystems.
  • We can deliver a modern lifestyle, create employment, improve our wellbeing, and ensure that the future we leave for our children and generations to come is safe and sustainable.

Zero Carbon Britain reports are available to download at the links below: