Government should seize the economic and environmental benefits of decarbonisation beyond taking coal off the system, enabling UK firms to prosper and lowering consumer bills, suggests a comprehensive report from the Committee on Climate Change.
The report notes that while emissions appear to have decoupled from economic growth, much recent progress is related to coal generation being displaced. Removing rump coal from the system will not deliver the reductions required to hit carbon budgets, states the report. Meanwhile, emissions from transport and heat are increasing. Equally, while emissions from industry fell 9% in 2016, around half of that is attributable to the closure of the Redcar steel plant, said the CCC.
The Committee outlines a number of policy packages that could deliver greatest carbon and economic benefits. Storage, both of energy and carbon in the form of CCS (carbon capture and storage), should be prioritised, it suggests, along with flexibility (demand-side response and flexible generation) and energy efficiency.
See the report here.