Sunday, September 3, 2017

Climate Breakdown Plan

The Government had 'promised' an emissions reduction plan (ERP) pursuant to the agreement by the Cameron Government to comply with the agreements in Paris to limit  global warming to 2 degrees (whilst seeking to achieve a 1.5degreee limit).   The post on 4/12/17 or 4 April 2017 provided a link to Planning to Reduce Carbon Emissions ( that explains how the land use planning system could be used to reduce emissions by about 50%.  Before the 2017 election the Government announced that the ERP would be issued in the autumn and would take the form of a Clean Growth Plan (CGP).  Would it be too cynical to believe that this suggests a watering down of the commitments that  were seen  as necessary to this country's contribution to the achievement of the Paris COP?
Hopefully there are NGOs ready to challenge the CGP if it can be seen to be an inadequate just as Client Earth managed to force the Government to improve the air quality improvement strategy (which will still prove to be inadequate and result in legal challenges).  For those who remember that the 'bedroom tax' was a tag given to the 'spare room subsidy', it would seem to be sensible to label the Clean Growth Plan as a Climate Breakdown Plan that would be closer to its real effects.  The actual wording should be attributed to George Monbiot (column in The Guardian 30 August) who was asking for the use of some honest language in the debate about 'climate change' and regarded both that term and 'global warming' as inadequate and misleading.
Putting a shot across the bows can be a sign of weakness, signalling impatience or a concern that the Government might actually come up to the mark.  However, in a case where the Government is wedded to GDP as a measure of its performance, and no convincing plan for 'clean growth' has been produced that would achieve the carbon reductions required by the Paris COP, it seems to be reasonable to get the retaliation in first and prepare to unpack and challenge the Climate Breakdown Plan when it eventually emerges.

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