Need for action ‘clear’ on the climate

The UK has climate targets to meet. Photograph: Jane Barlow
The UK has climate targets to meet. Photograph: Jane Barlow
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Demand for action on global warming is “rampant and clear”, leading UK government climate adviser Lord Deben has said.

Speaking ahead of the 10th anniversary of the UK’s world-first Climate Change Act, the Tory peer and former environment secretary said he was optimistic about efforts to tackle rising temperatures.

The Climate Change Act committed the UK to 80 per cent cuts in greenhouse gases by 2050, making the UK the first country in the world to sign up to national legally-binding targets to drive down emissions.

Lord Deben, chairman of the Committee on Climate Change, said ten years on the political consensus on climate was holding and was “really quite serious on all sides”. But success in cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the power sector had masked the lack of progress on cleaning up transport – where he accused car manufacturers of not taking the steps needed – and home heating.

Lord Deben said the UK needed to stop itself from becoming a “dumping ground” for less efficient cars that could not be sold.