The UK is to reduce 78 percent of its emissions by 2035, compared to 1990 levels, the government announced ahead of today’s Earth Day.
The climate change target – one of the most ambitious in the world – is in line with the recommendation from the independent Climate Change Committee and will come into law this June.
The Carbon Budget will limit the amount of greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted over a five-year period from 2033 to 2037, a move that will accelerate the UK to more than three quarters closer to reaching its net zero target by 2050.
For the first time, it will incorporate the UK’s share of international aviation and shipping emissions, crucial to the government’s decarbonisation efforts, and will ensure Britain remains consistent with the Paris Agreement temperature goal of limiting global warming to well below 2°C.
Today Prime Minister Boris Johnson will address the opening session of the US Leaders’ Summit on Climate, hosted by President Joe Biden.
Mr Johnson is expected to urge countries to raise ambition on tackling climate change and join the UK in setting targets for reducing emissions by 2030 to align with net zero.
Earlier in the week, Mr Johnson said: “We want to continue to raise the bar on tackling climate change, and that’s why we’re setting the most ambitious target to cut emissions in the world.
“The UK will be home to pioneering businesses, new technologies and green innovation as we make progress to net zero emissions, laying the foundations for decades of economic growth in a way that creates thousands of jobs.
“We want to see world leaders follow our lead and match our ambition in the run up to the crucial climate summit COP26, as we will only build back greener and protect our planet if we come together to take action.”
The UK is on track to outperform the third Carbon Budget which ends next year, as a result of significant cuts in greenhouse gases across the economy and industry, with the UK bringing emissions down 44 percent overall between 1990 and 2019.
Reaching net zero is vital for sustainable long-term growth and will introduce new opportunities for the UK economy, jobs and trade.