I have long supported a UK target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 at the latest, writes Sir Kevin Barron MP.
I therefore welcome that in June, Parliament passed this target into law, making the UK the first major economy in the world to commit to ending its contribution to global warming.
I believe this is a good first step in the right direction.
However, it is vital that we all continue to be guided by the science on this issue.
The scale and scope of any policies must be defined, not by political compromise, but by what is necessary to keep temperatures within safe levels.
If further scientific advances indicate that Britain needs to achieve net zero earlier, it is important that we all react accordingly.
I am also concerned that in July, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) – the UK’s independent climate adviser – reported that Britain remains off-course to meet its interim targets.
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It further stated that the Government had only fully delivered one of 25 headline policy actions it had recommended in its previous annual progress report.
At this rate, Britain will not reach net zero until 2099.
To get back on track to meeting net zero within a safe time frame, I believe we need to give tackling the climate emergency we are facing the time and resources it deserves.
This will require huge levels of investment, co-ordinated planning, new laws and significant Government intervention, with short-term targets for green energy and sustainable transport.
I will continue to push for these things at every opportunity.
There is no time to waste.