The grownups have finally won and everyone in the UK, from those in cold homes to those on polluted streets and in flooded towns, will benefit. The most important aspect of the UK government’s new clean growth strategy is its unequivocal statement that tackling climate change and a prosperous economy are one and the same thing.
This has been clear to many for some time, including Philip Hammond, if not his predecessor George Osborne. There is no long-term, high-carbon economic strategy because the impacts of unchecked climate change destroy economies, as Lord Nicholas Stern puts it.
Conservative - Party - Dream - Fantasies - David
But the Conservative party has long been swinging between the green dream and fossil-fuelled fantasies. David Cameron went from pledging the “greenest government ever” to dismissing the “green ****” in three years. Recent years have seen one green policy shredded after another, destroying confidence among the businesses we need to deliver a low-carbon economy.
The new strategy published on Thursday signals a new, if belated, beginning. It is the beginning of the end of the fossil fuel age: it is highly notable that the government plan omits any mention of fracking, having previously been its cheerleader.
Government - Plan - Climate - Laws - Track
The government had to produce this plan under its own climate laws to explain how it will get on track to meet the nation’s legally binding carbon targets in 2030 and beyond. But ministers have rightly made a virtue of the plan’s necessity.
The proposals themselves are ambitious but lack concrete suggestions in many areas. However, ambition always precedes action and there are plenty of groups, not least the government’s official advisers, the Committee on Climate Change, who will hold ministers to account.
Government - Efforts - Emissions - Buildings - Need
If the government’s efforts to cut emissions from buildings have been slow, it is now taking seriously the need to address energy efficiency. Energy that isn’t used – negawatts – are...
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