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Government’s Ten Point Plan ‘doesn’t go far enough to reach 2050 net zero target’, say Cambridge experts



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The government’s Ten Point Plan does not go far enough if the UK is to reach its net zero carbon emissions goal by 2050, Cambridge experts say.

Cambridge Econometrics chairman Richard Lewney, left, and CEO Phil Summerton. Picture: Richard Marsham
Cambridge Econometrics chairman Richard Lewney, left, and CEO Phil Summerton. Picture: Richard Marsham

Analysis by Cambridge Econometrics for the Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG), says the plan - unveiled by the Prime Minister last month - is good for the economy and jobs, and would help to grow GDP by up to an additional 1.8 per cent (£43billion) by 2030. It will reduce emissions to nearly 60 per cent of 1990 levels by 2030 and by nearly 70 per cent by 2035.

But the data analysts say: “The UK will need to go further and faster to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”

Analysis by Cambridge Econometrics
Analysis by Cambridge Econometrics

Hector Pollitt, chief economist at Cambridge Econometrics, said: “In a post-pandemic world, government support will be needed to push our economies back into growth. The Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan lays out how the environment will fit into the government’s measures to provide this support.

“The modelling by Cambridge Econometrics shows that these measures will create jobs, while simultaneously reducing emissions. However, further measures will be required if the UK is to meet its long-term decarbonisation targets. It would be better to start planning these additional measures as early as possible so that businesses can in turn effectively plan their investments post-Covid-19.’’

Analysis by Cambridge Econometrics
Analysis by Cambridge Econometrics

In response, the CLG of 60 business leaders has written to Boris Johnson calling on the government to set out a nationally determined contribution (NDC) towards the climate goal for the UK by the end of the year that demonstrates “the right level of ambition to guide a green recovery and secure international momentum”. NDCs are national climate plans highlighting climate actions and targets.

It says: “As the UK calls on other governments to set their own increased NDCs, it has a unique opportunity to catalyse action globally and lead the way for other countries to reflect this level of ambition.

“We hope you will announce an ambitious UK NDC before the end of the year.”

Among the signatories are Peter Simpson, chief executive of Anglian Water Group, Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO of Cambridge Ahead and Martin Garratt, CEO of Cambridge Cleantech. The CEOs of Centrica, Coutts, E.ON and Heathrow Airport are also among the signatories.

The Ten Point Plan set out investment plans for clean energy, transport, nature and innovative technologies, with the aim of creating a green industrial revolution and 250,000 jobs.

It brought forward the ban on new conventional cars and vans forward by a decade, from a planned date of 2040, though the sale of some hybrid vehicles will be allowed until 2035, with investment promised on charging infrastructure.

It pledged that the UK would produce enough offshore wind energy to power every home by 2030, supporting up to 60,000 jobs, and promised funding for low carbon hydrogen for industry, transport, power and homes, with the aim of developing the first town heated entirely by hydrogen by the end of the decade.

There were also promises of investment in large scale nuclear plants and the development of the next generation of small and advanced reactors, which could support 10,000 jobs.

While making cycling and walking more attractive ways to travel, the government also said it would invest in zero-emission public transport and research projects for zero-emission planes and ships.

Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO of Cambridge Ahead, is among the signatories. Picture: Keith Heppell
Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO of Cambridge Ahead, is among the signatories. Picture: Keith Heppell

Homes, schools and hospitals are to be made greener, warmer and more energy efficient, with a target of installing 600,000 heat pumps every year by 2028.

And the UK will become a world-leader in carbon capture technology, the plan said, while restoring the natural environment and planting 30,000 hectares of trees every year.

The letter in full

Dear Prime Minister,

Re: Business support for setting an ambitious UK 2030 NDC in line with the net zero target

As we stand a year away from the start of the COP26 Climate Summit, and five years on from the Paris Agreement, we believe there is an opportunity for the UK to demonstrate the right level of ambition to guide a green recovery and secure international momentum.

On behalf of UK businesses and investors, we call on the Government to set out an ambitious Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) by the end of the year that is at least in line with the Paris Agreement, the UK’s net zero emissions by 2050 target, and advice from the Climate Change Committee on the UK’s 2030 target.

We would actively support an NDC that is:

• Aligned with business targets: We represent businesses many of whom have set their own net zero targets, including a number who have signed the Business Ambition for 1.5 pledge, and investors that are aligning their portfolios to the goals of the Paris Agreement. UK businesses and investors would value a clear signal from the UK Government that ambition for the economy aligns with their own aims.

• Setting out clear ambitions for resilience: The NDC should be supported by solid plans and ambitions to ensure the UK is well prepared for the impacts of climate change.

• Embedded in UK policy: The NDC should include a comprehensive, just and inclusive delivery plan supported by all parts of government. We welcome your decision to publish a comprehensive Net Zero Strategy in the lead up to COP26. We stand ready to work with you on the development and delivery of this strategy, including policies that will deliver nearterm emission reduction in multiple sectors.

• Supportive of the UK building back better: An ambitious NDC can support the UK’s green recovery efforts, helping deliver significant job creation and growth opportunities. Clear policy can encourage investment in the technologies, such as carbon capture and storage and hydrogen, and resource efficient business models that are essential for a competitive, zero emissions UK economy.

As the UK calls on other governments to set their own increased NDCs, it has a unique opportunity to catalyse action globally and lead the way for other countries to reflect this level of ambition. We hope you will announce an ambitious UK NDC before the end of the year and look forward to continuing to work with you to develop a more prosperous, inclusive and resilient UK economy.

Yours,

  • 1. Nick Molho, Executive Director, Aldersgate Group
  • 2. Chris Turner, Executive Director, B Lab UK
  • 3. Amanda Mackenzie OBE, Chief Executive, Business in the Community
  • 4. Paul Dickinson, Executive Chair, CDP
  • 5. Chris Southworth, Secretary General, ICC United Kingdom
  • 6. Paul Vanston, Chief Executive, Industry Council for Packaging and the Environment (INCPEN)
  • 7. Stephanie Pfeifer, CEO, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC)
  • 8. Kinvara Carey, General Manager, Natural Source Waters Association
  • 9. Halla Tómasdóttir, CEO and Chief Change Catalyst, The B Team
  • 10. Helen Clarkson, CEO, The Climate Group
  • 11. Peter Simpson, Chief Executive, Anglian Water Group, and Co-Chair, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group
  • Colin Matthews, Non-Executive Chairman, EDF Energy, and Co-Chair, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group
  • 12. Jason Longhurst, Chairman, UK Business Council for Sustainable Development
  • 13. Julie Hirigoyen, Chief Executive, UK Green Building Council (UKGBC)
  • 14. Márcia Balisciano, Chair, UN Global Compact Network UK
  • 15. María Mendiluce, CEO, We Mean Business coalition

Businesses supporting the letter:

  • 1. Alessia Gotti, Textile Agent, AG Textiles Studio
  • 2. Peter Simpson, Chief Executive, Anglian Water Group, and Co-Chair, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group
  • 3. Jack Harvie-Clark, Director, Apex Acoustics
  • 4. Charles Kirwan-Taylor, Executive Chairman, ATLAS Infrastructure
  • 5. Sue Riddlestone, CEO, Bioregional
  • 6. James Amos, Company Director, Boodles
  • 7. Rachel Elwell, CEO, Border to Coast Pension Partnership
  • 8. Denise Le Gal, Chair, Brunel Pension Partnership
  • 9. Andy Wales, Chief Digital Impact and Sustainability Officer, BT plc
  • 10. Morten Nilsson, CEO, BT Pension Scheme Management
  • 11. Neil Squibbs, CEO, Buro Happold Limited
  • 12. Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO, Cambridge Ahead
  • 13. Martin Garratt, CEO, Cambridge Cleantech
  • 14. Peter Hugh Smith, CEO, CCLA
  • 15. Chris O’Shea, CEO, Centrica
  • 16. Chathura Sudharshan, CEO, Chanodil
  • 17. Ian Duncombe, Board Director, chapmanbdsp
  • 18. Adam C.T. Matthews, Director of Ethics and Engagement, Church of England Pensions Board
  • 19. Stephen Moorhouse, Vice President and General Manager, Great Britain, Coca-Cola European Partners
  • 20. Tim Attwood, Managing Director, Conisbee
  • 21. Dougie Sutherland, CEO, Cory Riverside Energy
  • 22. Alex Vaughan, CEO, Costain Group plc
  • 23. Peter Flavel, CEO, Coutts
  • 24. Steve Foots, Group Chief Executive, Croda International Plc
  • 25. Jean-François Baralon, CEO, Dorval Asset Management
  • 26. Michael Lewis, CEO, E.ON UK
  • 27. Emmanuelle Spriet, CEO, E-Voyages Ltd
  • 28. Gordon Power, Chief Investment Officer, Earth Capital
  • 29. Stuart Lemmon, CEO, EcoAct UK, an Atos company
  • 30. Andy Clark, CEO, EdenTree Investment Management
  • 31. Colin Matthews, Non-Executive Chairman, EDF Energy, and Co-Chair, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group
  • 32. Nicola Lovett, CEO, ENGIE
  • 33. James Brueton, CEO, EnviroBuild
  • 34. Robert Gould, Chair, Environment Agency Pensions Committee, Environment Agency Pension Fund
  • 35. Richard Speak, Co-Founder, Environmental Finance
  • 36. Bryan Smail, Chief Finance Officer, Falkirk Council Pension Fund
  • 37. Joost Bergsma, CEO and Managing Partner, Glennmont Partners
  • 38. John Holland-Kaye, CEO, Heathrow Airport Ltd
  • 39. Marc Waters, UK&I Managing Director, Hewlett Packard Enterprise
  • 40. Nigel Stansfield, President (EAAA), Interface
  • 41. Chris Ireland, UK CEO, JLL
  • 42. Cesar Taillardat, CEO, Jogu Ltd.
  • 43. Mike O'Donnell, CEO, and Lord Kerslake, Chair, London CIV
  • 44. Doug Heron, CEO, Lothian Pension Fund
  • 45. Roy Bedlow, Chief Executive, Low Carbon
  • 46. Robert Lambe, Managing Director, Melius Homes
  • 47. Chris Smith, Managing Director, Michelin Tyre PLC
  • 48. Simon King, Director of Sustainability and Social Value, Mitie
  • 49. Nicola Shaw CBE, Executive Director, UK, National Grid
  • 50. Julia Szajdzicka, Managing Director, ND Metering Solutions
  • 51. Stefano Agostini, CEO, Nestle UK & Ireland
  • 52. David Fairbrother, Managing Director, NSR Management Ltd
  • 53. Jean-Pierre Grimaud, CEO, OFI Asset Management
  • 54. Jack Broadley, Founder/Owner, Pelorus Consulting
  • 55. Jon Johnsen, CEO, PKA
  • 56. Jose Luiz Moura Neto, SVP & COO UK & Ireland, Salesforce
  • 57. Keith Anderson, Chief Executive, ScottishPower
  • 58. Stephen Rouatt, CEO, Signify UK&I
  • 59. Nicola Stopps, CEO, Simply Sustainable
  • 60. Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive, Sky
  • 61. Mark Smith, Chief Executive, Southern Co-op
  • 62. Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive, SSE plc
  • 63. Richard McIndoe, Director, Strathclyde Pension Fund
  • 64. Michael John Lytle, CEO, Tabula Investment Management
  • 65. Jason Tarry, CEO, UK & Republic of Ireland, Tesco
  • 66. Alistair Allison, Managing Partner, TFT
  • 67. Sarah Bentley, CEO, Thames Water
  • 68. Tom Druitt, CEO, The Big Lemon CIC
  • 69. Saker Nusseibeh, CEO, The International Business of Federated Hermes
  • 70. Harry Grocott, CEO & Founder, Treeconomy
  • 71. Bevis Watts, CEO, Triodos Bank UK
  • 72. Yvette Edwards, Communications and Sustainable Business Director, Unilever UK & Ireland
  • 73. Dave Worthington, Managing Director, Verco
  • 74. Louise Kjellerup Roper, CEO, Volans
  • 75. Nicci Russell, Managing Director, Waterwise
  • 76. Matthew Orme, Director, Wenlock Spring Water LTD
  • 77. Mario Mazzocchi, Group Chief Executive, Wesleyan
  • 78. George Latham, Managing Partner, WHEB Asset Management
  • 79. Charles Malissard, Head of Media & Public Affairs, WSP
  • 80. Liz Barber, Chief Executive, Yorkshire Water
  • 81. Tulsi Naidu, UK CEO, Zurich Insurance Company

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