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Bright Blue, the independent think tank for liberal conservatism, responds to the Government’s announcement of a new target in law to slash emissions by 78% by 2035, incorporating the UK’s share of international aviation and shipping emissions for the first time.

Responding, Patrick Hall, Senior Researcher at Bright Blue, said:

“This ambitious target to cut net emissions by over three quarters by 2035 is a big step forward for the UK’s decarbonisation agenda and the sort of global leadership we need in the year of COP26. We are delighted that Bright Blue’s recommendation to include the UK’s share of international aviation and shipping emissions in carbon budgets has been adopted by the Government.

“The Government’s intention to include aviation within its climate targets is laudable, but this hard-to-abate sector requires bold policies and support to decarbonise. Key to aviation’s decarbonisation will be the scaling up of sustainable aviation fuel, and zero emission flight through hydrogen and electrification.

“More broadly, whilst this is a very ambitious target, in many respects the Government appears to be heading in the opposite direction: scrapping its flagship home improvements scheme; failing to condemn the opening of a new coal mine; and, rolling back purchasing support for electric vehicles.”

Bright Blue proposed including international aviation and shipping formally in carbon budgets in our report Hotting up: Strengthening the Climate Change Act ten years on.

[Image: Ian Dick]