via Associated PressBoris Johnson gives a speech during the Global Investment Summit at the Science Museum in London.
The UK government has published its “net zero” strategy, which aims to reduce the country’s climate-damaging emissions by offering money for electric cars, street charging stations and tree planting, among other things.
The 360-page “Landmark Strategy”, published in the run-up to the crucial UN Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow, describes the plans to achieve legal targets to drastically reduce emissions by 2050 and to support 440,000 jobs in new low-carbon sectors.
What will the government do?
The new investments in the plans include £ 620 million in grants and infrastructure for electric vehicles like charging on the street, £ 500 million in innovation projects to develop new clean technologies and £ 140 million in starting green hydrogen projects.
A £ 450 million pot will give households in England and Wales £ 5,000 in grants to replace their gas boilers with low carbon electric air source heat pumps for heating and hot water, and there is a £ 124 million grant for forest creation and restoration Moor to store carbon.
And the government said it will introduce a zero-emission vehicle mandate that will set a percentage of manufacturers’ new car and van sales at zero emissions each year starting in 2024.
In addition, 10% of aviation fuel is expected to come from sustainable sources by 2030, backed by a £ 180 million funding.
The strategy also includes reducing emissions from the energy sector, including supporting new nuclear power plants and industry, as well as measures to remove carbon dioxide from the air.
What will change in people’s lives?
The strategy says it will work “with the grain of consumer choice,” not forcing people to change their habits, rip out their boilers, or scrap their current car. People will continue to fly, eat meat, warm our homes, and go to our workplaces for decades to come – but changes are needed, experts warn.
One of the most important things that will change is the way people live heat their homes, away from gas and other fossil fuels for heating and hot water.
For many people, that means switching from a boiler to a heat pump installed and powered by electricity in individual homes that works a bit like an inverted refrigerator to generate heat from the outside air or sometimes the floor.
travel will probably change too. Transport is currently the single largest source of emissions, so they need to be addressed and a key way to do this is by moving from gasoline and diesel vehicles to electric vehicles.
By the 2030s, all new cars will be electric, and if people have off-street parking, they can charge their car on the front axle instead of having to refuel at a gas station.
Projections by the Independent Advisory Committee on Climate Change do not include a cut flyingbut a decline in the demand for flights, and the government is pushing the development of more sustainable fuels.
What about food?
The strategy is silent on what some see as a key element in tackling climate change – reducing meat consumption to reduce emissions from farm animals and freeing land for tree planting.
The Climate Change Committee says we should be eating a fifth less meat by 2030. The committee says its meat curb recommendations are well within the government’s own healthy eating guidelines.
How much will it cost? Who will pay
Public investment of £ 26 billion has been “mobilized”, the government said, and in return it plans to unleash £ 90 billion of private investment in 2030 towards the mid-century goal.
How much this will cost individuals and families is a big question as the Treasury Department warns that the costs – and benefits – are not evenly shared between households and that action is needed to cut costs and balance the burden fairly to distribute.
The Treasury Department’s review of the net zero cost found that it was not possible to estimate the impact on individual household finances, but there would be exposures to public spending and a loss of fossil fuel tax revenues like that Fuel taxes arise, which should be raised.