Home / News & insights / News / Marking ten years of the Climate Change Act

Marking ten years of the Climate Change Act

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) is today marking ten years of the Climate Change Act. The Act, which also established the CCC, received royal assent on 26 November 2008.

Over the past decade, the Act has been the key driver of action to reduce the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions and to ensure steps are being taken to prepare the UK for the impacts of climate change.

To mark the occasion, the Committee has today launched a new animation reflecting on how the Act became law, the role of the CCC in advising the UK Government and Devolved Administrations, and progress to date in tackling climate change across the economy. The Committee will later co-host a parliamentary reception to reflect on achievements to date and challenges ahead.

Commenting on a decade of the CCC and the Act, Chris Stark, Chief Executive of the Committee on Climate Change, said:

“It’s interesting to compare the political debate today with the one we had ten years ago. The Climate Change Act is a celebration of what can be achieved by a confident, optimistic Parliament, demonstrating global leadership on the defining issue of our times. The contrast with today’s tone is striking.

“We should still feel good about the Act. It has endured because it’s so well-constructed. The core idea is as essential as ever: a long term goal, set with reference to the science, with binding intermediate steps, and a tight governance framework. The oversight of the Committee on Climate Change is critical to making it work. Over the decade, we’ve worked hard to maintain our objectivity and independence.

“The Act provided the impetus for the story of the last decade: decarbonising electricity. That was the right strategy, but it’s not sufficient now. We’ll shortly discover whether the Act can move the UK into new territory.

“Ten years is a good review point. We can check in on the latest science and the global position. I’m pleased we’ve received the instruction to look again at the UK’s long-term (2050) climate change target. Our advice is due to be published in Spring 2019, then all eyes will be on Parliament again.”

Find out more about the Committee’s achievements over the past decade, and the achievements of the Act more broadly.