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Tory progress on climate change policy is ‘grinding to a standstill,’ campaigners say

TORY progress on climate policy is “grinding to a standstill,” green campaigners said today, as a damning report found the government’s plans will fail to deliver net zero. 

The climate change committee’s (CCC) latest report, published today, warns that the government’s programme for tackling global warming will not deliver on legal targets to cut emissions in the coming decades.

The CCC singled out energy efficiency as a particular problem for meeting the targets, warning that there is a “shocking gap” in government efforts to insulate homes in the face of soaring energy bills. 

In its annual report to Parliament on the progress being made to tackle Britain’s contribution to climate change, the committee called for a faster push to improve energy efficiency in homes and a switch to electric heating, such as heat pumps, to reduce fossil fuel consumption.

The committee also said that it supports moving the costs of historical green subsidies off electricity bills and into general taxation to cut energy costs and encourage people to move to electric heat pumps.

CCC chief executive Chris Stark said that it was a “complete tale of woe,” that an industry devastated by the removal of support in 2012 was being expected to gear up again and consumers expected to demand energy efficiency without any policy measures to support them.

“We call this shocking, that’s what it is,” he said.

“We absolutely must be doing something about this at scale; making homes better insulated is absolutely a critical factor, especially when we’re experiencing such high energy prices.”

Greenpeace UK’s political campaigner Ami McCarthy said: “It’s kind of ironic that the CCC has named this a Progress Report when the government’s progress on climate policy is grinding to a standstill.

“The cost-of-living crisis should be adding impetus to the kind of action we need to see to stop the climate-wrecking energy waste from our homes, since the solution to both problems — an urgently implemented nationwide insulation programme — is the same.

“Yet this government seems intent on driving action from fossil fuel giants instead, offering tax breaks to encourage new drilling under the false pretence that it will get us out of this mess.

“Time is running out. The government must roll up its sleeves and deliver the benefits of a climate-friendly economy for all.”

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