The UK Climate Change Act contains a legally binding long-term goal to reduce the UK’s net emissions of greenhouse gases to zero in 2050. This ‘Net Zero’ goal was legislated in 2019 following advice from the Climate Change Committee (CCC), requested by Government in 2018.
The CCC recommended the Net Zero 2050 goal as an appropriate contribution from the UK to the Paris Agreement. It can be achieved with known technologies alongside improvements in people's lives, and within the expected economic cost that Parliament accepted when it legislated the previous 2050 target for an 80% reduction from 1990.
This briefing summarises the considerations behind the CCC advice, which is published in full in two reports on the CCC website.
This briefing is structured in four sections:
- Defining Net Zero
- When to reach Net Zero
- The UK Net Zero 2050 target
- The impacts of the UK’s Net Zero target