What Is The UK’s NDC And Why Is It Important?
Every country signing up to the Paris agreement set out a target, known as a Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by around 2030. But the initial round in 2015 were insufficient to fulfil the Paris goal, of holding global heating well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, with an aspiration to a 1.5°C limit.
Last night the UK Government stated they will aim to reduce emissions by 68% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels as part of a domestic action plan that will deliver the nation’s contribution towards the Paris Agreement and limiting global temperature increases to well below 2°C and build towards net-zero by 2050.
The new target meets the recommendation of the Climate Change Committee, which advised on the net-zero target for 2050 and is set to publish guidance on future carbon budgets imminently.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “We have proven we can reduce our emissions and create hundreds of thousands of jobs in the process – uniting businesses, academics, NGOs and local communities in a common goal to go further and faster to tackle climate change.
“Today, we are taking the lead with an ambitious new target to reduce our emissions by 2030, faster than any major economy, with our Ten Point Plan helping us on our path to reach it. But this is a global effort, which is why the UK is urging world leaders as part of next week’s Climate Ambition Summit to bring forward their own ambitious plans to cut emissions and set net-zero targets.”
The UK’s original NDC was a 53% reduction by 2030 and was submitted as part of the European Union and while pushing towards an 80% reduction in emissions by 2050, rather than the new net-zero target that has since been enshrined into law.
The announcement comes ahead of the UK co-hosting the Climate Ambition Summit later this month. Marking the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement, the summit will act as a call to action for other countries to resubmit NDCs ahead of next year’s COP26 summit in Glasgow.
Does The Government Have A Plan For Reaching The 68% Target In The Next Decade?
The government has a partial plan, but it does not yet amount to a set of fully fledged policies. Last month, the prime minister set out a list of 10 points, which he billed as a “green industrial revolution”, containing the phase-out of petrol and diesel cars within 10 years and investments in hydrogen and renewable energy for homes and businesses across the UK.
However, critics pointed to the chancellor’s spending review and infrastructure strategy, which contain a £27bn investment in roads, which are likely to raise carbon levels, and weak regulations on the hundreds of thousands of new houses to be built which may not be up to green standards.
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