CCC recommends a minimum 34% cut in GHG emissions by 2020 – 1 December 2008

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) launched its first report today, Building a low-carbon economy, which advises the Government to reduce greenhouse gases by at least 34% by 2020.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) launched its first report today in which it advises the Government to reduce greenhouse gases by at least 34% by 2020.

In Building a low-carbon economy, the independent body recommends reducing emissions by at least 34 % relative to 1990 levels (21% relative to 2005) by 2020, and say this should be increased to 42 % relative to 1990 (31% relative to 2005) once a global deal to reduce emissions is achieved. It says meeting these targets is necessary to avoid the threat of climate change and can be achieved using existing technologies and by putting policies in place to support the move to a low-carbon economy. This follows their previous recommendation that the UK should reduce all greenhouse gases emissions by at least 80 per cent by 2050, which was included within the Climate Change Act. At a cost of less than one per cent GDP between now and 2020, the CCC advises that the UK cannot afford to turn a blind eye to the threat of climate change.

Lord Adair Turner, Chair of the CCC, said,

“The reductions required can be achieved at a very low cost to our economy; the cost of not achieving the reductions will be far greater.”

Ed Miliband, Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change said,

“Plotting a course to a low carbon future here in the UK is vital if we are to reach our domestic goals and reach an international agreement. Carbon budgets will set our trajectory and send out a clear message that we will tackle climate change here in the UK.”