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Welsh action critical to meeting climate targets – 1 December 2008

Regional  action on climate change will be critical in delivering the tough emission targets recommended by the Committee on Climate Change, said Welsh Minister for the Environment, Jane Davidson today. She cited a recent UNDP report which found that 80% of action on climate change happens below nation-state level. Davidson recently urged delegates at the U.N’s  climate change conference in Poznan to acknowledge the potential of regional action. Davidson was speaking  alongside David Kennedy, the CCC’s Chief Executive, at the Welsh launch of the CCC’s report, which she described as “hugely significant”.

Davidson highlighted a pilot project  funded by the UNDP which will place Wales in partnership with the Mbale region in Uganda. The two regions will work together on joint climate change action plans. The idea is to share solutions to climate change between communities in the developing and developed world. Davidson said that she had been struck by the sense of urgency articulated by the developing countries at Poznan, many of whom are already feeling first-hand the impacts of climate change in their everyday lives, for example in accessing vital resources like water.

The Welsh Assembly Government has already committed to reducing emissions by 3% each year from 2011.

Davidson said:

“Wales is being looked at with huge interest to see if we can deliver on our ambitious targets. I am determined that Wales can be a world leader in tackling climate change”.

David Kennedy said:

“There are significant opportunities for Wales to reduce emissions from power generation, buildings and industry, transport and agriculture. Going forward, there will be a crucial role for the Welsh Government Assembly working with the UK Government, Welsh households and businesses to unlock emissions reduction potential. Meeting this challenge is important in the context of Welsh emissions reduction targets and UK carbon budgets.”

The CCC has identified the potential for savings of around 5 MtCO2 in Wales by 2020.  The Welsh Assembly Government  will publish its climate change strategy in April 2009.