Dalelorenzo's GDI Blog
14Sep/210

Tesco and WWF launch climate-friendly cattle feed scheme for dairy farmers

Tesco and WWF launch climate-friendly cattle feed scheme for dairy farmers

Tesco dairy farmers to receive 80 per cent seed give for seeds and herbs it claims can improve animal diseases, spray and soil quality while also cutting releases

Tesco has teamed up with conservation group WWF to launch a new aid intrigue designed to expand the market for sustainable cattle feed for dairy farmers, the supermarket heavyweight uncovered yesterday.

The scheme furnishes 15 farmers in Tesco's Sustainable Dairy Group an 80 per cent subsidy to plant herbal leys, a mixture of flowers, legumes and herbs which are designed to offer health feed for dairy cows while also enriching the clay and improving irrigate character, it interpreted. The feed assortment can also help to reduce the carbon footprint of farms, as it does not need as much artificial nitrogen fertiliser to grow, and even captivates more carbon than other grasses.

The dairy farmers are then also offered competitive rates for their milk to ensure they have enough money to invest in animal welfare and environmental sustainability, Tesco added.

Tom Atkins, Tesco's agriculture manager, indicated by the new strategy would help support the supermarket's aim to halve the environmental impact of its customers' average patronizing basket, by targeting the high-pitched carbon emissions combined with the dairy industry.

"We want to ensure we're do all we can to continue to support our farmers and, in this critical decade for climate and sort, assist realize our dairy farms some of the most sustainable in the world, " said Atkins. "We will continue to work with our farmers to both abbreviate carbon emissions and continue to increase the amount of biodiversity on farm. We will likewise be working together on more innovative initiatives like our herbal leys project, which should introduce massive benefits to its implementation of clay state and biodiversity."

The initiative forms part of an ongoing partnership between Tesco and WWF, and the two plan to continue subsidising seed costs for farmers for the next two years, with deem to potentially offering more farmers the chance to take part in the scheme in future.

Tesco also said it was also planning further measures to cut farm carbon emissions, improve grunge excellence, shorten water habit and improve biodiversity. Since 2016 Tesco sustainable Dairy Group farmers have cut their emissions by 6.5 per cent, but the supermarket said it was now targeting a further 10 per cent of cases cut in radiations by 2025.

Among the 15 farmers already involved in the trial are Amie Lovatt and her husband Chris, who moved a raise in Cheshire. Lovatt said the couple "jumped at the chance to be included in the ordeal as it's important that we all have to find the balance between producing affordable and healthy food and looking after the environment we live in".

"We believe that herbal leys could stipulate a excellent provide answers to that as not only will they improve grime health and formation thanks to their deep beginnings but are also little reliant on artificial fertilisers, " she added.

Read more: businessgreen.com

12Sep/210

Could UK gas power stations still play a role on a net zero grid?

Could UK gas power stations still play a role on a net zero grid?

Aurora Energy Research postulates thermal power generation gave with hydrogen and CCS furnishes most cost-effective pathway to a net zero power system

Power sector decarbonisation is frequently characterised as the low-pitched hanging fruit of the UK's net zero change. The dazzling decline in renewable energy technology expenditures over the last decade has established the sector as the linchpin of the country's decarbonisation drive, provide a potential template for how government and industry can work together to scale lettuce technologies that can decarbonise the economy. Earlier this month, authority people confirmed that renewables toppled fossil fuels as the dominant source of ability on Britain's grid for the first time ever in 2020, plying 38 per cent of the members of the island's power.

But a report from Aurora Energy Research today cautions that the latter phases of power sector decarbonisation could well be set to diverge from the aforementioned narrative. It suggests the costs of removing emissions from the power system are likely to rise over the course of the year as policymakers planned how to deliver firm and flexible low-grade carbon generation ability that can oust unabated fossil fuel power from the grid. After all, as the electrification of heat and transport picks pace, Britain's peak demand capacity is set to grow to 80 GW by 2050, up from 50 GW today, and the fossil fuel gas-fired power stations that supply much of this power top demand today are clearly incompatible with the nation's mid-century net zero target.

At the same time, however, the intermittency of solar and wind power represents poses challenges for to secure the ignites are remained on at all times in the UK, and that crest times of challenge can be met regardless of when the wind blows and sunshine radiances. Often, the answer here is touted as more efficient use of electricity through increasingly sophisticated grid demand technologies backed by a combination of nuclear power and vigor storage from batteries and ran hydro facilities.

But, as superpower request spates in the coming decades, Aurora Energy Research argues that rather than ditching gas power absolutely, thermal fossil fuel power assets may actually volunteer the most cost-effective route to ensuring firm and adaptable power on the future grid - afforded fossil facilties are transformed to limit their environment impact.

The report contends that the installation of carbon capture and storage( CCS) and hydrogen engineerings at thermal fossil fuel power plants renders the cheapest pathway to stipulate house and adaptable exertion to the grid, even more so than alternative options on a more renewables-dominated grid. While assemble peak grid supremacy require in 2050 with CCS and hydrogen expects approximately PS40bn in capital expenditure, it estimates that this would be significantly less than the estimated PS1 70 bn price tag from scaling alternative technologies to ensure firm and resilient superpower such as nuclear, shot storage or lithium-ion batteries.

Marlon Dey, GB research lead at Aurora Energy Research, argued that lithium-ion artilleries and pumped hydro could have been "contribute so much" to the power sector's decarbonisation due to their limited storage durations.

"It is clear that puff and solar will provide a stretching and cheap generator of capability to meet our needs as we electrify heating and transportation, but questions remain in terms of how we ensure the safety of supply in a decarbonised power system, " he said. "Looking out to 2050, gas-fired assets still look to remain the only workable alternative we will have to keep the lights on. Carbon capture and hydrogen technologies hence present a technically workable pathway for gas assets to deliver energy security, whilst being able to drastically chipped their emissions in line with net zero goals."

It is a potentially controversial conclusion that is likely to rile climate activists, who have long feared that an overreliance on carbon capture and blue hydrogen engineering hazards fastening in fossil fuel infrastructure and continued demand for oil and gas, right at a time when major economies such as the UK's should be taking the lead in rapidly moving away from fossil fuels. Indeed, the International Energy Agency( IEA) concluded earlier this year that no brand-new fossil fuel roots should be sounded anywhere in the world after 2021 if world-wide climate targets are to remain achieveable, and there is increasing confidence that dark-green grid engineerings such as demand-side response and force storage is likely to be scaled and delivered at a low-spirited enough cost to ensure a fossil fuel-free grid.

But Aurora Energy Research's report today contends that gas power plant should not be taken off the counter wholly by policymakers, and highlights various examples of projects underway in the UK that afford a potential pattern for how to harness fossil fuel power for the net zero transition. While five major hydrogen and carbon captivate supremacy projects are currently underway in the UK, this count is expected to grow following the publication of the government's Hydrogen Strategy, expected imminently, which will set out how the government intends to stimulate supply and demand for the low-grade carbon fuel.

Hydrogen and carbon capture technologies can be deployed in several different ways to decarbonise thermal assets, according to the newspaper. These include installing CCS infrastructure at gas power plant - an approaching favoured by SSE for its Keadby 3 and Peterhead terminals - and the blending of low carbon hydrogen gasoline with natural gas at terminals, as planned at Rocksavage power station in Cheshire and at a seed in Saltend Chemical Park on the Humber. The report too considers the economics of structure hydrogen power plant , noting that two such projects are already being planned by industry alliances at Saltend Chemicals Park and Immingham.

Even so, in order to scale such technologies, it concludes overall that government support will still be critical for any CCS or hydrogen projects to become economically viable, arguing that retrofit CCS campaigns could expenditure around PS104-107 per kW under a 10 -year dispatchable influence agreement( DPA ), rising to PS134-139 for new erects under a 15 -year DPA.

Hydrogen has lower capex requirements than carbon captivate, and as such brand-new body-build hydrogen CCGTs are estimated to require total subsidy support of PS87-93/ kW, with hydrogen peaking embeds likely to need around PS72-78/ kW, it calculates. It careful, however, that hydrogen oil rates are three to ten times higher than the clean gas toll, and that such projects hence "remain out of merit" without government give report. A carbon toll of PS210/ tCO2 by 2035 would be required to place hydrogen flowers ahead of unabated plants in merit require, it estimates.

Moreover, the analysis suggests that carbon offsets may be required to deliver a net zero power system that is fair to end consumers. The final one per cent of carbon emissions from the GB grid could cost more than PS1, 500 per ton of CO2, it memo, and as such it could be in the proposal payers' interest for policymakers to tap afforestation and land use change to compensate for the final slice of emissions and save energy costs down.

By mapping out a future for gas power in the UK that relies on CCS, hydrogen, gives and counterbalances in order to be serve the net zero economy of the future, it is clear from Aurora Energy Research's analysis that this offers a challenging - both economically and politically - pathway to make. Yet at the same time, there can be little doubt that scaling up enough renewables roots to meet demand, on top of developing and rolling out the grid and storage engineerings to support wind and solar, likewise brought about by major, complicated technical challenges that must be overcome in the UK's quest for net zero.

Which pathway the UK chooses to take remained to be seen, but if nothing else Aurora's research today renders a compelling assertion for why it may be premature at this stage to write off the future for oil and gas in a renewables-domincated power system.

Want to learn more about the net zero transition and how it will impact your business? Sign up now for a free pass to the Net Zero Festival and keep an eye out for upcoming details on this December's Net Zero Culture Summit.

Read more: businessgreen.com

1Sep/210

Is holding COP26 fully in-person worth the carbon footprint?

Is holding COP26 fully in-person worth the carbon footprint?

Andrew Warren ponders the carbon impact of flying thousands of government fleshes and delegates to Glasgow in November

The Daily Mail is at best a fair weather, and awfully periodic, friend of the movement to halting runaway climate change. Its front sheet at the weekend contained a highly personalised onslaught upon Alok Sharma, the onetime Business Secretary. Headlined 'The Height of Hypocrisy', the article's subhead chastises him for 'jetting to 30 nations in the last seven months' in his capacity COP2 6 President-Designate

The newspaper's indignation might well have been regarding the incongruousness of somebody 'jetting' around, when their prime capacity is to persuade the 4,000 delegates due to attend November's conference in Glasgow to implement actions that they are able to minimise further emissions of greenhouse gases.

In fact, this 'jetting' wasn't the central analysi from Britain's best-selling newspaper. It was the undeniable fact that Sharma had toured six countries which require UK visitors to quarantine on return for ten days, hitherto he had not done so.

However, it is the objective of Sharma's plethora of flights - to drum up attendance at COP2 6 - which creates the key ecological question. According to the City of Glasgow's website, it will act as official legion to the COP2 6 delegatings, which is set to involve upwards of 30,000 people, representing over 200 countries, organizations, NGOs, faith groups and many more. That intends potentially tens of thousands of return plane tickets to Scotland.

Abandoning physical attendance at meets significantly reduces releases per head by players. Those wandering to the average international 12 -day conference - the length of the impending Glasgow COP2 6 contest this November - rack up an average rate of 2,961 kg of carbon emissions each. Add that all together, and it seems that these 30,000 beings due to travel to and from COP2 6 alone will between them increase carbon emissions this year by approaching 89 million tonnes of carbon.

The bulk of this, 2,300 kg per head, will be due to flights. But even when neighbourhoods attend such a convention, totalling up hotel accommodation, neighbourhood transportation of 10 miles to the venue, and gathering venue oil will still come to 660 kg per head, according to the Polish National Centre for Emissions Management.

In contrast, becoming involved in a virtual consultation previous 12 dates - including emissions from home gas and electricity; computer manufacture; and use of networks and data centres - medians out at just 36 kg per person. That is only seven per cent of the carbon footprint of being at a regional conference. And simply one per cent of the emissions caused by an in-person event.

Interestingly, two blue-chip climate change anatomies weighed in on this issue earlier this week. However, both seem to have done so chiefly on health, rather than climate change, floors.

The public should be kept away from November's COP2 6 in order to prevent the occasion becoming a super-spreader event for Covid-1 9, distributed according to former UK chief technical advisor Sir David King. He would support moves to restrict in-person access to formal delegates

Around 30,000 people are otherwise expected to attend, but exclusively around 4,000 of those will be delegates, which would reduce COP2 6's addition to being able to world releases to really 13 million, rather than 89 million tonnes. Former UN climate chief Christiana Figueres has also called for a composite COP2 6 mixing virtual and in-person activity.

Many of the additional 26,000 attendees fright their expressions won't be heard if they don't appear in person. And of course, based on past experience, they may well be right.

A COP2 6 spokesman had reaffirmed that planners were working towards COP2 6 being held in person but were closely monitoring the Covid situation. As apparently is the Daily Mail front page. After all, the most environmentally friendly and healthiest conference is the virtual one to which none walks at all.

Andrew Warren is a onetime special advisor to the House of Commons' environment select committee.

Read more: businessgreen.com

28Aug/210

How to develop a net zero working culture

How to develop a net zero working culture

Thousands of business now have net zero companies in place, but how can they ensure their employees, purchasers, and stakeholders are on board with transition periods? Several extending conglomerates offer their insights on how to build a net zero driving culture

With thousands of companies and hundreds of investors boasting trillions of dollars of resources under control having set cyberspace zero radiation objectives in recent years, scrutiny has swiftly turned to how to deliver on such grandiose decarbonisation targets. Much of the following debate has focused on the technologies that companies will have to deploy, the innovations they will have to catalyse, the infrastructure they will have to upgrade, and the policies required to accelerate emission reduction efforts. But there is also a crucial human element at the heart of any successful web zero policy: how can industries persuade their employees and stakeholders to get behind reforms that will require the organisation to transform itself inside and out? How can they build a net zero running culture?

For Gudrun Cartwright, environment conductor of benevolence Business in the Community, it is a fundamental challenge that everything ventures are going to have to get to grasps with. "It's a transformational activity over a magnitude we've never seen before, " she indicates. "So the starting point has to be senior leaders being truly honest about what this means to them and asking: 'Is my actual business modeling part of the problem or one of the purposes of the mixture? '"

Such honesty likewise needs to be matched by high levels of consistency in an organisation's climate messaging. That conveys lobbying acts need to be in line with stated decarbonisation commitments and there has to be a coherent, credible, and properly funded plan for tackling radiations across the business over season. The timber needs to be open about both the opportunities and the challenges associated with the transition to the net zero emissions. Not only does such honest and consistency help maintain the company's external reputation, but it also works internally to maximise the chances of the whole organisation being on board with the project.

"It's about unity, " insists Cartwright. "If you're not embedding the risks and opportunities in your approach, if you're not governing what you're doing at the highest level and parties don't feel like you're putting enough resources and budgets to it, then that is a disconnected letter you're transmit to employees."

Once the overarching strategy is in place, communicating both what is going to change and why such changes are being concluded is critical. In short, there is huge value in treating hires as been growing and passing them a degree of ownership over the approach. Virgin Media O2 has prepared a goal in terms of achievingnet zero carbon actions by the end of 2025 and, as Tracey Herald, the company's head of corporate responsibility and sustainable development issues, admits some elements of the plan will have a direct impact on works. "For example, transitioning to an electric fleet makes varying the everyday tools field-based units rely on, " she says. "But beyond this, we want to make sure everyone understands the character they can play in helping us get there."

Setting a specific 'society and environment' objective for each department has also helped translate the overarching targets into concrete action at Virgin Media O2. For procedures, for example, the objective might to be translated into a focus on transitioning the network to cleaner power sources or modernizing cool technology to save energy in the company's data centres. For marketing, meanwhile, the goal is more around driving patron awareness and take-up of greener products and services. "This[ coming] makes purity, intent, and accountability across our business, " argues Herald.

Jennie Colville, head of sustainability at property development and handling conglomerate LandSec, agrees that achieving web zero releases has to be a joint effort for its 500 -plus direct employees.

Landsec has committed to reduce its absolute carbon emissions by 70 per cent by 2030 comparison with a 2013/14 baseline, for belonging under its operational control. The target includes Scope 1 and 2 direct radiations, and a portion of Scope 3 cost order emissions from downstream leased assets.

The targets have been translated into a five-step net zero schedule, in which it aims to reduce operational energy sources, invest in renewables, use an internal shadow price of carbon, reduce its construction impacts and offset the remaining carbon. "That induces it super clear for everybody working with us or on our behalf on what steps we need to take, " says Colville.

She too stresses the critical importance of securing senior management 'buy-in' for the approach. "I've been working in sustainability all my occupation and I've ever maintained that more can be done when senior managers are engaged and being role model for sustainable living, " she says. "And that's emphatically happening more."

Getting the C-suite on board can be achieved through simple, clear communication, she disagrees. "I ever go back to the data, " she says. "Keep it simple, don't get too technical, and then present the issue, present the options, and then what are the recommendations to take action? "

But there is also a need to tailor messages for your gathering. "If it's the chief financial officer that you're speaking to, speak about money, " Colville cautions. "If it's your operations lead, are talking here about how you can make sure that the building is more efficient. If it's marketings, are talking here about what holders you can attract."

Cartwright concurs that establishing a net zero labor culture has to come from the top, singling out broadcaster Sky for its "brilliant engagement campaign" which started by briefing all senior leaders and going them on board with the need for a bolder approach before then getting them to make that theme out to the company's many divisions.

However, council grade reinforcement, while indispensable, is not sufficient on its own. Cartwright argues that in many organisations there is a way to go in engaging the full faculty mas right down to customer-facing, front-line personas. "The whole net zero climate action needs to run through the organisation like a put of rock, " she says. "There's very many senior leaders[ that] are very committed and then you've got a brilliant cohort of sustainability professionals driving activity, but how it weaves through the core programme and the deliverables is not quite there yet."

Cartwright calculates companies need to develop better ways of measuring success and engagement with all employees and then moving act. One possible mechanism for driving wider engagament is through internal reward systems. At Virgin Media O2, for example, carbon reduction objectives are explicitly linked to remuneration for the company's executive committee.

Then there is a company's wider supply chain. Colville admits promoting environment action across a company's value chain can be challenging, but it is hugely important because 40 per cent of the members of the carbon emissions for Landsec's science-based targetcome from customers consuming vigour within the buildings that it controls. "Yes, they're not our employees but it's a sphere of influence that we can work in, " she justifies. "So a big piece of our work is around engaging with our purchasers about energy reduction."

This engagement has to cover not just what parties are was requested to do, but why they are being asked to do it. Colville says it is hugely important that employees are genuinely hired because then "they understand what we're trying to achieve ...[ And] that enables them to speak more fluently to patrons, to supply chain partners. It's around furnishing the right data and providing the facts".

Cartwright agrees it is vital to work collaboratively along the value bond. "A lot of our members are starting to work with their suppliers as part of their Scope 3 proposes, and there's a clear promote rather than punishing type of approach for most, " she says. "There's a lot of peer learning for suppliers, so introducing people together on the same product categories and looking at how they can help each other." As with most corporate transformation programs, carrots tend to work more effectively than sticks.

But again, firmnes is important, Cartwright emphasizes. "How do you make sure that your buying squad are briefed, are having those targets within their remit, and therefore they are passing that down the line rather than just saying, 'Well actually that's all huge but we just want the cheapest'? " she asks.

Beyond the use of discrete mechanisms to encourage engagement with an organisation's net zero strategy, there is also a wider need to inspire employees and stakeholders that the changes that are on the way. Cartwright reasons there is a lot companies can do to inspire employees to see the transition as an exciting opportunity.

Virgin Media O2's internal communications have a regular sustainability topic, for example, and the company has a dark-green radical that around 1,000 hires are signatories to, which moves corporate phenomena fostering its 18,000 -strong staff base to clear light-green obligations. These pledges are then incentivised with offerings such as discounts on home renewable energy tariffs or free tree saplings.

"Our objective is to make sure all our colleagues feel that they can do their chip - that they're part of it, in and out of work, " explains says Herald. "And this is really about present them different ways to engage and encouraging the keenest to become advocates who will inspire and construct the changes with us."

Herald says some hires have found the focus on sustainability has a knock-on effect in their private souls. "For example, making our parties access to carbon-cutting tech like electrical vehicles at work might mean a slightly different way of doing their job, but it could also open the doors to greener tech at home, " she predicts.

Landsec has also been trying to encourage its employees to live more sustainably in their everyday lives. The firm recently signed up to the Count Us In challenge, a UN-backed initiative taken up by many large-scale firms to encourage individuals to take concrete but practicable steps to cut their carbon footprint such as walking and cycling more, abbreviating food waste, and 'greening' their money.

Colville says the challenge has provoked conversations within the organisation and, as parties start to return to the office in the wake of the covid crisis, generated event and "a little bit of a buzz".

However, there are probabilities associated with any booking expedition and there are limits to how much many organisations are willing to be seen to interfere in employee's livings. When Landsec starts accounting for home operating power consumption, for example, it will probably use a agent estimation methodology rather than asking for people's energy proposals "which could be considered a breach of privacy", Colville admits.

But the general consensus is that net zero policies tend to command high levels of support from works, reflecting the large majorities of the public that support more ambitious climate action. Support is particularly high among the younger proletarians occupations are keen to attract and Colville argues that having clear sustainability appreciates and behaving on them can help with staff recruitment and retention. "Within interviews where I've been banking personally those questions are coming out: What's the culture of the organizations? What is your response to climate change? " she says. "Future talent are using those criteria to assess whether they would like to work for the organisation."

Research backs this up. Seventy-three percent of employees cross-examine in the 2020 Edelman Trust Barometer said they expect a prospective employer to offer the chance to influence the future of society in a positive way.

A concerted effort to build a net zero wielding culture feels timely for multiple rationales. The imminent COP2 6 Climate Summit and this week sobering IPCC report on the scale of the environment crisis should spawn climate act more visible than ever before in the coming months. The government is poised to unveil a raft of new decarbonisation plans during the autumn. Meanwhile, the huge increase in homeworking during the pandemic has both shifted carbon emissions from direct corporate responsibility in roles to domestic regulates, at the same time as invoking thorny questions about working practices and the relationship between employees and supervisors - questions that are being further amplified by staff the shortfall in a number of crucial sectors.

Establishing a shared mission to accelerate the net zero transition alongside moreflexible working practices could help boost morale and foster a sense of corporate community at a time when numerous ventures are unavoidably knowledge a sense of flux.

Moreover, flexible working can help to deliver direct emissions reductions. A report by Carbon Trust on The carbon savings potential of dwelling use obtained wide change in carbon emissions for residence and position wielding depending on seasonal, regional and individual behaviour patterns. But, in most cases, bureaux engender higher carbon emissions than commuting; in Germany, for example, hybrid labouring could save up to 12.2 Mt of CO2 releases per year. More broadly, Cartwright says the pandemic has also brought business travel into the spotlight, developing questions about carbon emissions, its relationships with purchasers, and the extent to which companies should be competing rather than collaborating.

Ultimately, she argues, net zero requires a deep re-evaluation of how an organisation is run. "How do you make a culture that is thinking differently about our measures of success? What are the timescales we work on and exactly what we we honored for? Is it just increasing sales, productivity or boundaries or is there more to it than that? " These are the questions a company with a net zero operating culture is willing to wrestle with.

A company with a deep cyberspace zero culture will too have to be open to suggestions - and even judgment - from staff if it is not living up to its predicts. "It's not about any one company achieving net zero, " says Cartwight. "It's about the world achieving net zero - so you have to be thinking about your part in the whole transition , not only your individual business." The hope is that net zero working cultures can help catalyse the wider societal mutates that they are able build deep decarbonisation possible.

Want to find out more about the net zero transition and how it will impact your business? Sign up now for a free pass to the Net Zero Festival and keep an eye out for upcoming details on this December's Net Zero Culture Summit.

Read more: businessgreen.com

5Aug/210

‘Measure everything’: How life cycle emissions data can catalyse a net zero built environment

'Measure everything': How life cycle emissions data can catalyse a net zero built environment

Granular analysis of life time emissions of six buildings offers clues for how carbon-intensive buildings sector can meet global climate goals

One year after finalising an innovative framework for measuring buildings' full-life cycle emissions, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) has put it to the test in a major study that sets out how the building sector's extensive emissions footprint could be reduced even as construction activity ramps up around the world in the coming years.

The report, published this week by the WBCSD and engineering consultancy Arup, analyses the environmental performance of six modern building projects against the WBCSD's new Building System Carbon Framework, which calculates the emissions of a building across its full life cycle, as opposed to just operational emissions, the approach taken by most industry assessments.

The analysis of the lifecycle emissions of four office buildings in London, a residential timber tower in Amsterdam and a mixed-use building in Copenhagen, provides a unique snapshot of the industry's current performance and the barriers it must overcome to reduce its emissions in line with net zero goals. Not only do the findings highlight areas where the industry could focus its initial decarbonisation efforts, they provide tangible evidence of how building lifecycle assessments can provide a granular view detailing where decarbonisation action can and should be targeted.

The findings hammer home the case for the sector to move away from its focus on operational emissions and take a more holistic approach to environmental reporting, with the analysis confirming that emissions from the energy use in a building represents just half an average project's climate impact. Embodied carbon, generated in construction, upkeep, and end-of-life of a building project is responsible for the rest, according to the findings. A fifth of buildings' life cycle emissions is the result of maintenance and refurbishment, meaning 30 per cent is caused by the start and end of life of any given building. Moreover, 70 per cent of embodied carbon originates from just six materials.

With the built environment estimated to be responsible for 38 per cent of global emissions, and rising, the importance of forging new pathways to decarbonise building construction, operations, maintenance, and decomissioning can not be overstated. Construction is expected to rise to meet the demands of a growing global population through to 2050 and it is critical that companies and policymakers have a crystal clear understanding of the impact buildings are having on the environment if they are to have a shot at meeting global climate goals. As the old addage goes, you can't manage what you can't measure.

But as things currently stand, the industry is ill equipped to meet its decarbonisation challenge, with weak carbon accounting practices providing operators with just a partial picture of buildings' climate impacts. In a statement released yesterday to coincide with the report, the WBCSD estimated that less than one per cent of building projects around the world currently calculate and report their full carbon footprint.

Roland Hunziker, director of sustainable buildings and cities at WBSCD, argued the construction industry would need to start measuring the full carbon footprint of their assets if the world is to reach global climate targets. "The report shows that if all parties in the building value chain collaborate and focus on whole life carbon emissions reductions, we can start setting this important sector on a path towards net zero," he added.

Whole lifecycle carbon assessments should be done "as a matter of course" for new buildings, the report argues. "Measure everything, at all stages, on all projects," it urges. Without a solid body of evidence, industry players will not be able to take action to reduce embodied emissions, it notes.

"We have to consider carbon like we currently consider money," said report author Chris Carroll, building engineering director at Arup. "The idea that you would build a project and not know how much it costs financially would seem incredible."

The report authors concede that creating lifecycle assessments for buildings will not be easy, in particular for first movers, due to limited data collection and sharing by different players in the sector. The report itself is proof of this issue, with the authors revealing that pulling together the six case studies proved a difficult and time-consuming process due to a lack of appropriate and consistent data. While there are currently barriers to collecting accurate and consistent carbon intensity data for buildings from both an embodied and operational perspective, data associated with building components and materials is of "particular concern", it notes. There are similarly long-standing concerns across the industry around the so-called 'performance gap' where buildings result in higher levels of energy use and emissions than expected once they are in operation, which requires sustained data collection after the building has been completed to track and address.

As such, the report's authors argues that players across the built environment sector must work together to plug data gaps and increase data creation and sharing related to both building materials and energy use.

"The industry currently doesn't know where it stands when it comes to carbon emissions, making it difficult to set meaningful targets and drive progress," Caroll warned. "We must see more data sharing, more collaboration and transparency to be able to achieve the decarbonisation that the world demands of us in the next few decades."  

Despite the considerable challenges facing the built environment over the coming years, the WBCSD and Arup remain positive about the sector's potential to abate its enormous carbon footprint. It is possible for the building sector to halve its embodied and operational carbon by 2030, it contends, providing relevant carbon data is "systematically" collected, shared, and then utilised at the beginning of a project.

This data collection drive should be complemented by firm targets for emission reduction for the sector, it notes. The WBCSD has nominally endorsed the World Green Business Council's 2030 emissions reduction targets, which calls for all new buildings, infrastructure, and renovations to have at least 40 per cent less embodied carbon and all new buildings to have net zero operational emissions. However, the study argues the baseline for the target needs to be made more explicit and notes that there is potential for the goals to be refined on a region by region and building category basis.

Simple global targets for emissions reduction for the buildings industry will incentivise the construction sector to quickly adopt new ways of designing efficient buildings with sustainable resources, the report notes. Headline targets should also encourage universal measurement of carbon emissions and allow industry players to plot their short and long-term priorities for reducing them, it adds.

Elsewhere the report calls for green building organisations to sharpen up the definition of a 'net zero building' and clarify the rules around carbon offsetting in the building sector. The six case studies highlight how offsetting will have to play a role for the majority of buildings that claim to be net zero, and so a framework must be made to introduced to ensure emissions reduction projects are robust and valid, it notes.

Despite the small sample size of the six projects studied, and their relatively similar geographies, Arup and WBCSD insist the findings provide an "indicative picture" of the challenges the building sector faces around the world, and the UK government would do well to explore the report's conclusions as it finalises the long-awaited Building and Heat Strategy. At any rate, the message is clear: an intense data collection drive for building emissions needs to start now to give the sector - and by extension, the planet - a shot at capping global temperature rise at a safe levels. Data collection and entry may not be sexy, but it could potentially be world saving.

If you want to find out more about every aspect of the net zero transition and what it means for your organisation you can now register for a free pass to this year's Net Zero Festival.

Read more: businessgreen.com

27Jun/210

Net zero Nature: Can carbon offsets be credible?

Net zero Nature: Can carbon offsets be credible?

VIDEO: Ecosia CEO Christian Kroll, the Emergent Forest Finance Accelerator's Eron Bloomgarden, and Professor Nathalie Seddon of Oxford University's nature located mixtures initiative, discuss the fraught and stretching busines for carbon counterbalances

Carbon offsetting seems simple enough - it's the road many of the world's biggest companies soon use to mitigate their CO2 and it is likely to play a key role in mitigating hard-to-abate emissions.

However, offsetting should never be an alternative to genuine slasheds in an organisation's carbon footprint. And, as not all carbon-offsets are created equal, customs must make careful picks when it comes to selecting a provider or offset solution.

At BusinessGreen's recent Net Zero Nature summit, a multitude of resulting digits and professionals sat down try and lift the lid on the ins and outs of carbon offsetting, considering how enterprises can shunned unwittingly misinforming investors, and items some of the murkier aspects of the carbon-offset world.

Featuring Ecosia CEO Christian Kroll, the Emergent Forest Finance Accelerator's executive director Eron Bloomgarden, and the director of Oxford University's quality based mixtures initiative Professor Nathalie Seddon, The faascinating discussion can be perceived again above, or it is also available on demand on the Net Zero Nature website.

All of the members of the committee debates, keynote speeches, and presentations from BusinessGreen's recent Net Zero Nature summit event - which took place on 27 May and featured scores of top orators from business, politics and academia - are now available to watch again on demand for those who have signed up to the phenomenon through the Net Zero Nature website and on Swapcard.

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3Jun/210

Food waste-powered trucks: Bristol set for ‘world’s largest’ biomethene refueling station

Food waste-powered trucks: Bristol set for 'world's largest' biomethene refueling station

CNG Fuels plans to open Avonmouth refuelling station later this year to support fleet hustlers switching their trucks to run on biomethane made from food waste

The "world's largest" renewable biomethane refuelling terminal is set to open near Bristol later this year, enabling truck drivers to fill up on low-pitched carbon gasoline produced from food waste, CNG Fuels announced today.

Located in Avonmouth near the M4/ M5 conjugation, the refuelling terminal is geared at servicing of the some of the busiest consignment superhighways in the UK, in a bid to encourage more hustlers of heavy goods vehicle( HGV) sails to fix the switching away from diesel fuel, according to the biomethane infrastructure developer.

Renewable biomethane provided at the refuelling depot will be sourced from 100 per cent food waste, enabling sail operators to "run their vehicles on low-carbon fuel, brace net zero intentions and save money", the company said. It claims the renewable biomethane is the most cost-effective lettuce alternative to diesel for HGVs, enabling them to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90 per cent while also cutting costs by around 35 -4 0 per cent.

HGVs account for 4.2 per cent of UK carbon emissions, it said, and the Avonmouth refuelling station will enable up to 80 trucks to fill up every hour.

CNG Fuels currently passes six refuelling stations across the UK, with plans to open a further 14 following the adjournment of 2022, quoting increasing demand, which it said was growing at 100 a year at present. By 2025, the conglomerate said it expects 10 per cent of the UK's high-mileage HGV fleet to be running on Bio-CNG fuel.

"Avonmouth is a key site for CNG Fuels' stretch across the UK, " said Philip Fjeld, CEO of CNG Fuels. "Such a strategically crucial locating necessitates our biggest refuelling station yet. This station will enable even more fleet motorists and hauliers to reduce their carbon emissions and save money."

The Avonmouth station will open up potential for more low-grade carbon delivery vehicles to begin operating across the South West of England and South Wales, including for firebrands such as Warburtons, Farm Foods, and Hermes, it said.

Steven Gray, Warburtons national delivery manager, said switching the meat brand's HGV fleet from diesel to biomethane was "critical for reaching our haul decarbonisation goals". "CNG Fuels' new low-carbon refuelling station in Avonmouth is perfectly based for our spread cores in the area and will expand the wander of low-carbon transmissions we can make across the country, " he added.

In other developments, CNG Fuels is currently securing equips of biomethane derived from manure to create a fuel it claims will be "net zero on a wheel-to-wheel basis". Manure renders off the greenhouse gas methane, which is 28 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in some estimations, and using methane as an HGV fuel can frustrate this gas from being released into the atmosphere.

The EU's Renewable Energy Directive recognises biomethane from dung as a carbon negative ga, and the UK is expected to follow suit in 2022.

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16May/210

‘Leading by example’: Green economy welcomes stretching target to slash UK emissions 78 per cent by 2035

'Leading by example': Green economy welcomes stretching target to slash UK emissions 78 per cent by 2035

But big questions remain over how the UK will assemble enormously daring brand-new targets, after authority signalled it will not sign off on all the CCC's policy recommendations

The UK government has today approved some of the world's most ambitious decarbonisation targets, effectively rubberstamping a programme that will require the phasing out of gas boilers and internal combustion machine vehicles, the massive expansion of natural carbon submerges, and the accelerated development of low-spirited carbon technologies for manufacture, shipping, and aviation.

As reported last night, the government has formally accepted the recommendations of the Climate Change Committee( CCC) and established the Sixth Carbon Budget that runs from 2033 to 2037 will require a 78 per cent cut in carbon emissions compared to 1990 tiers by 2035. Meeting the brand-new destination would move the UK more than three fourths of the way to delivering on its overarching target of structure a web zero radiation economy by 2050, cementing the UK's position as the industrialised economy to deliver the fastest decarbonisation trajectory in the process.

Crucially, the government also confirmed it would accept the CCC's calls for the target to cover emissions from international shipping and aviation for the first time - a move that should help to trigger increased investment in low-spirited carbon aviation and sending technologies, but will likewise induce the new emissions objectives considerably harder to achieve.

The government announced this afternoon that it would table legislation on the new targets in Parliament tomorrow, ahead of President Joe Biden's Earth Day virtual conference of world leaders on Thursday. The brand-new Carbon Budget is expected to then be enshrined in law by the end of June 2021.

The Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the new targets would is built around the UK's already world-leading goal to trounce emissions 68 per cent by 2030. "We want to continue to raise the bar on tackling climate change, and that's why we're setting the most ambitious target to cut emissions in the world, " he said in a statement.

He added that the targets would help to trigger substantial brand-new speculation and catalyse a raft of economic opportunities. "The UK will be home to pioneering organizations, new technologies and lettuce innovation as we make progress to net zero radiations, laying the foundations for decades of fiscal rise in a way that creates thousands of jobs, " he predicted.

And, repetition the US administration's recent pushing to help more countries to deliver more ambitious decarbonisation programmes, Johnson urged other world leaders to adopt similarly unfolding targets. "We want to see world leaders follow our extend and coincide our ambition in the run up to the crucial climate summit COP2 6, as we will merely build back greener and protect our planet if we come together to taking any decision, " he said.

COP2 6 President-Designate Alok Sharma, who has invested the past few months traversing the globe as part of a diplomatic push designed to encourage all the world's major economies to come forward with both long term net zero the objective and near word decarbonisation goals and light-green asset strategies, similarly hailed the new targets as a template for other governments to follow. "This hugely positive step forward for the UK gives a gold standard for bold Paris-aligned action that I push others to keep pace with ahead of COP2 6 in Glasgow last-minute this year, " he said. "We must collectively prevent 1.5 degrees of warming in reach and the next decade is the most critical period for us to change the perilous direction we are now on. Long word targets must be backed up with reliable bringing proposals and setting this net zero focused Sixth Carbon Budget builds on the world resulting legal framework in our Climate Change Act."

Business groups and environmental campaigners moved quickly to herald the move as a major boost to the UK's decarbonisation strategy. "Setting the Sixth Carbon Budget in line with the CCC recommendations employs the UK on a reliable direction achieve these goals net zero emissions target, " said CBI chief economist Rain Newton-Smith. "As COP2 6 legions, the UK government is leading by speciman by setting this stretching target. Business stands ready to deliver with the latest low-grade carbon engineerings and innovations that are driving emissions down every year. By tackling this together, we can reap the benefits of transition to a low-pitched carbon economy."

However, Newton-Smith participated with experts from across the light-green economy to warn that be conducted in conformity with the new target will require urgent moves to strengthen the current climate policy framework. "The target emphasises the importance of the 2020 s as a decade of transmission on our atmosphere aspirations, and urgent action is needed now to make this a reality, " she said.

Similarly, Shaun Spiers, executive director at think tank Green Alliance, praised the government's decision to send out "a resounding message, domestically and internationally, that the UK is taking its net zero releases target seriously", said the inclusion of international aviation and sending supported a "particularly important" demonstration of atmosphere lead. But he also should be pointed out that "what we need now is to ensure there is no breach between aspiration and program, so the UK has the right tools in its armoury to meet these targets".

In addition, executive director of the Aldersgate Group Nick Molho commended the authorities concerned for its "ambitious and evidence-based" targets, but stressed that "focus must now turn to strengthening the UK's policy framework to meet this new target, by putting in place a detailed and cross-departmental net zero strategy that will drive private be invested in low-toned carbon goods and services, supply chains, jobs and skills."

The move comes on the same day as Green Alliance published the latest edition of its Net Zero Tracker report, which analyses progress against the UK's net zero destination this parliament and today warned that based on current programs the country is on track to miss its emissions target for 2030 by around 40 per cent.

The report warned of a risk of "complacency" in the face of a decarbonisation target that can only be met through the completion of the biggest and fastest industrial revolution in biography. Nonetheless, in herald its brand-new targets for the 2030 s the government was at soreness to reject that accusation, foreground the recent publication of its Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy, Energy White Paper, and North Sea Transition Deal, all of which promise to mobilise billions of pounds of brand-new investment in cutting edge low-pitched carbon infrastructure. It too should be pointed out that the UK has over-achieved against its first and second Carbon Budgets and is on track to outperform the third Carbon Budget which concludes with 2022 thanks to significant pieces in greenhouse gases across the economy that show the UK slash releases 44 per cent between 1990 and 2019. And, it reiterated that further plans to cut emissions are in the pipeline and are expected to be announced well ahead of this autumn's COP2 6 Summit.

"The UK is bringing forward bold ideas setting out its own vision for transitioning to a net zero economy and how the government can support the public in transitioning to low-toned carbon technologies, including publishing the Heating and Building Strategy and Transport Decarbonisation Plan later this Spring, " Number 10 said in a statement, said a cross-government Net Zero Strategy will likewise be published ahead of COP2 6, with Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng currently commissioning manipulate across Whitehall to help inform the bold schedules across key sectors of the economy.

Kwarteng said the government's decarbonisation intentions were now firmly embedded at the heart of the UK's economic recovery strategy. "This latest target shows the world that the UK is serious about protecting the health of our planet, while also seizing the new economic opportunities it will bring and capitalising on light-green engineerings - yet another step as we improve back greener from the pandemic we head the world towards a cleaner, more prosperous future for this generation and those to come, " he said.

The government today too sought to head off concerns about the potential cost of meeting its brand-new targets, confirming that the Treasury will publish its much-anticipated Net Zero Review in the coming months.

It hinted that the conclusions of its consideration of the item are likely to be significantly more positive than previous evaluations that have been accused of over-estimating the costs of decarbonisation. "Government analysis finds that costs of action on climate change are outweighed by the significant benefits - abbreviating polluting releases, as well as bringing fuel savings, improvements to air quality and enhancing biodiversity, " Number 10 said. "The government expects the costs of meeting web zero to continue to fall as lettuce technology advanceds, manufactures decarbonise and private sector investment grows. Reaching net zero will also be essential to sustainable long-term growth and therefore the health of public finances, as well as open up new opportunities for the UK economy, jobs and trade - and the government's grandiose proposals are essential to clutch these opportunities."

It is an assessment that will be music to the ears of countless dark-green the enterprises and investors. But significant questions remain over precisely how the government intends to meet the new targets.

In a expose text in its statement, the government said it agreed with the CCC's advice that a 78 per cent cut in emissions by 2035 was feasible, but it would not be signing off on all of the Committee's recommendations. The CCC's report on the Sixth Carbon Budget had foreseen a decarbonisation trajectory that would require the development of a zero emission electricity grid, fundamental changes in land use, the phasing out of gas boilers, and significant emissions reductions from industry and agriculture. But Number 10 hinted that in potentially controversial ranges, such as encouraging people to eat less meat to as to reduce their carbon footprint, it would stray in favour of technological answers over programs designed to alteration behaviours.

"The government will look to meet this reduction target through investing and capitalising on brand-new dark-green technologies and innovation, whilst maintaining people's freedom of choice, including their nutrition, " it said. "That is why the government's Sixth Carbon Budget of 78 per cent of cases is based on its own analysis and does not follow each of the Climate Change Committee's specific policy recommendations."

It is a line that will spark intense speculation over what will make it into the government's much foreseen net zero policy, especially after various of its recent decarbonisation policy bundles, such as the Energy White Paper and North Sea Transition Deal, have been criticised by campaign radicals, reporters, and opposition MPs who have warned the government's contrives remain cruelly underpowered.

Labour's Shadow Business Secretary Ed Miliband sought to emphasise this gap between passion and plan in his reponse to today's announcement, welcoming the higher ambition target for 2035 as "the right thing to do" while disagreeing the government "can't be trusted to match rhetoric with reality".

To underscore his object, he highlighted plans to develop a new coal sentiment in Cumbria, the recent decision to scrap the flagship Green Homes Grant retrofit voucher scheme, and the fact that the UK still remains off track for fit its atmosphere objectives from the late 2020 s onwards.

"Ministers have failed to bring forward an grandiose dark-green recovery, extending up three main monetary affairs to do so, " he said. "We need both governments that discuss the environment disaster as the emergency it is. That represents greater intention than this government matched with much more decisive activity. This year, as emcees of COP2 6, the UK has a particular responsibility to lead the world and show the way forward for a greener future. This government isn't up to the task."

But while push is undoubtedly bearing down on the government for more policy precision on the domestic front, which can in part help bolster its international climate leader credentials in the run up to COP2 6, that it is acting decisively to set in the statute books one of the most ambitious interim decarbonisation targets to date of any major industrialised economy lured a warm welcome from the CCC's "delighted" president of the united states Chris Stark.

The decision to follow the Committee's advice and legislate for the 2035 target is "important and historic", he said, set the UK "at the forefront of global efforts to reach net zero". "By implementing our recommendations in full, the government's decision rests on the most comprehensive ever assessment of the path to a fully decarbonised economy, " said Stark.

But, as he pointed out , now that target has been set in stone, every facet of UK society and the economy must now stand up and be counted - and meter is running short to do so. "Now we have mounted this goal in constitution, government, the enterprises and beings up and down the country can shed their full value behind specific actions needed to get us there, " said Stark. "It means that every selection we procreate from now is required to be the right one for our climate."

Read more: businessgreen.com

2May/210

JP Morgan and Citi pledge multi-trillion dollar green finance blitzes

JP Morgan and Citi pledge multi-trillion dollar green finance blitzes

Investment banks bolster their environment finance commitments for coming decade in last wave of Wall st. net zero financing targets

US investment banks JP Morgan Chase and Citi have significantly ramped up their environment finance commitments, yesterday launching schedules that would amount to several trillion dollars in sustained and low-grade carbon investment in the coming decade.

In separate bulletins yesterday, Citi has committed to delivering$ 1tr in sustainable finance by 2030, of which half will go to climate answers, while JP Morgan Chase said here today promote and finance$ 1tr in lettuce initiatives by the end of the activities of the decade as part of a major $2.5 tr sustainable finance target. The two banks, which are among the world's largest funders of fossil fuels, both quoted the need to use their significant influence to tackle climate change.

In a blog post on Thursday morning, Citi's head of global public affairs Ed Skyler sanctioned the bank would support a wide array of environment mixtures, including renewable energy, lettuce constructs, sustainable agriculture, and clean-living engineerings, aimed at accelerating the transition to a sustainable and low-carbon economy.

The bank's existing target to deliver $250 bn of environmental finance by 2025 has been ramped up to unlocking $500 bn by the end of the decade, it said.

"Given our world-wide footprint and our capacity in supporting financial undertaking around the world, Citi has a capacity to play in achieving the[ UN] Sustainable Development Goals - and in this moment as we look towards surfacing and rehabilitating from the Covid-1 9 pandemic, it's more crucial than ever that we address these priorities together, " Skyler wrote.

It comes only weeks after Citi announced it is targeting net zero enterprises by 2030 as well as net zero financed emissions by mid-century, amid a gesticulate of climate hopes that have swept US investment banks in recent months.

JP Morgan, meanwhile, yesterday committed to unlocking$ 1tr of such investments for initiatives that accelerate the deployment clean energy and promote the transition towards a low-carbon economy by the end of 2030, as part of a broader $2.5 tr financing programme dedicated to sustainable development.

JP Morgan CEO and chairperson Jamie Simon said the bank was "committed to doing its part" in delivering a low-carbon economy. "Climate change and difference are two of the critical issues of our time, and these brand-new exertions will help create sustainable economic development that should contribute to a greener planet and critical investments in underserved communities, " he said. "Business, government and policy leaders must work together to support long-term mixtures that improvement fiscal inclusion, bolster sustained economic development and further the transition to a low-carbon economy."

The bank, which is the largest in the US by assets, said it would help its consumers "navigate the challenges and long-term benefits" of the low carbon modulation through sustainability-focused, research and advisory services and a dedicated 'green economy' team that specialises on clean-living vigour, economy technologies, sustainable finance and agriculture and food technology.

It follows the JP Morgan's commitment last year to align its financing works with the goals set by the Paris Agreement.

The recent bulletins from JP Morgan and Citi come less than a few weeks after Wall Street rival Bank of America similarly committed to providing$ 1tr in "low carbon investment" by the end of the activities of the decade, as part of its own recently-announced goal of delivering net zero emissions across its financing work, operations and supply chain by mid-century.

Yet such commitments from major US investment banks are unlikely to quell scepticism from green activists, as many of these fiscal monstrous followed up with plough substantial sums of investment into fossil fuel industries. Statistics published earlier this month by the Rainforest Action Network revealed Citi and JP Morgan Chase are the banking sector's most prolific fossil fuel funders, having cater $237.5 bn and $316.7 bn respectively into fossil fuel houses in the five years since the Paris Agreement. Green groups have therefore chosen to bickered long-term climate targets and finance commitments must also be backed by act in the short term to divest from fossil fuel firms.

Read more: businessgreen.com

19Mar/210

‘Opportunity to reset’: How MPs are urging the Treasury to use tax policy to drive green recovery

'Opportunity to reset': How MPs are urging the Treasury to use tax policy to drive green recovery

Environmental Audit Committee Chair Philip Dunne talks to BusinessGreen about the need for 'a tax system fit for net zero Britain' and the right time to judge whether the government has delivered on its light-green retrieval predicts

MPs are urging the government to use the upcoming Budget to usher in a major alteration of the tax system to align the UK's spending plans with its net zero and biological diversity commitments, alerting experience is running short to deliver on its promise of a dark-green economic recovery from the coronavirus crisis.

Parliament's Environmental Audit Committee( EAC) today launched a wide-ranging report on the government's lettuce recuperation agenda which says major reforms to UK taxation and the speedy release of long-awaited policy approaches will be central to laying the foundations of a greener, job-rich economy that protects nature.

Among a long list of proposed actions, it calls for cuts in VAT for light-green produces, the creation of a new National Nature Service to help protect wildlife, and scoping work to explore the potential for implementing an economy-wide carbon tax and carbon territory adjustments to drive investment in low-toned carbon infrastructure and action 'carbon leakage' from the UK economy.

Other recommendations include urgently delivering clear strategies to deliver new carbon capture and storage( CCS) and hydrogen projects, specifying clear and ambitious targets in the delayed Environment Bill, lay the foundations of domestic EV battery manufacturing at magnitude, and aligning the UK's net zero and sort agendas.

It likewise calls on the government to "rigorously" assess its PS27bn road building programme against the UK's air quality, atmosphere, and biodiversity objectives before individual programmes continue - a recommendation that follows disclosures arising from an on-going law challenge that Transport Secretary Grant Shapps overrode official advice that the controversial program should be reviewed on environmental grounds.

Philip Dunne MP, chair of the EAC, said the Covid-1 9 pandemic was a symptom of the wider environmental crisis the world currently faces, and should be treated as a "wake-up call" for Ministers to set the UK on a far more ambitious pathway to a net zero release, biodiverse future.

"The economic recovery will mold our national economy for decades to come, and it necessary that tackling climate change and rebuilding nature is at its core, " said the Conservative MP for Ludlow. "There will be no inoculation against runaway climate change, and it is our responsibility now, abusing the opportunity of the economic recovery, to set the UK on track for net zero."

The Chancellor is set to deliver the Budget on 3 March, and the EAC implored Rishi Sunak to grasp the opportunity to bring forward a raft of proposals to encourage green behaviour change and drive investment in low carbon engineerings and nature-recovery efforts.

One of the main recommendations in the report centres on slashing VAT on green concoctions for house energy efficiency upgrades and low-spirited carbon construction measures, as well as for repair services and products containing reused or recycled fabrics to boost uptake and investment in circular economy endeavors - a suggestion that was propagandized up the agenda earlier this month with the launch of a brand-new safarus by the Daily Express similarly calling for VAT to be axed on dark-green products.

The EAC also repetition calls for an overhaul and increase for the troubled Green Homes Grant programme, following weeks of negative headlines arising from administrative problems with the arrangement and approval from the government last week that it is withdrawing over PS1bn from the initial budget of the stimulus package.

Further tax motivations is appropriate to be given to ultra-low emission vehicles to boost uptake, while other current environmental taxes - such as Air Passenger Duty - should be reformed in order to better reward and drive efforts to develop greener aircraft technology, the EAC argued.

And, the Committee urged the government to begin scoping work on an economy-wide carbon tax - which it said would be "one of the most economically efficient ways to incentivise low-toned carbon choices" - in addition to looking at the potential merits of carbon territory adjustments.

"A tax system fit for net zero Britain is key, " said Dunne. "It will encourage innovation, give confidence to the sector and patronage a corporation to fix the low-carbon transition. There are endless initiatives that can lead to a greener future and the Chancellor should use his upcoming Budget statement to start this process."

Whether or not the Chancellor will take up the recommendations remains an open question. The report follows criticism from the government's spending watchdog, the National Audit Office( NAO ), last week which accused the Treasury and HRMC of having exclusively a "limited understanding" of how the UK's tax regime patronizes atmosphere and environmental objectives. Meanwhile, political opponents have thrown the authorities concerned for failing to deliver a multi-billion pound lettuce stimulus program similar to those adopted by Germany and France.

As such, calls are growing for the government to deliver on its promised 'build back better' agenda on variou figureheads. The EAC's calls for VAT reform resemble those which have frequently come from a range of business and environmental groups over the past year, such as Green Alliance, the REA, and even the Sustainable Restaurant Association( SRA ), while proposals for an overhaul of carbon pricing program and the urgent verification of a raft of decarbonisation policies have widespread backing from business leaders.

Dunne told BusinessGreen he was looking to the upcoming Budget for the government to set a more ambitious course for a light-green retrieval, as he said there was a need for a "wider debate" about how taxation could be used to support the UK's net zero transition.

"What it is essential to do as we pate towards net zero Britain is to open up a debate across the country about how should tax policy and concedes - incentives as well as retributions - be directed to help people change behaviour, " he said.

Green asset

The report also takes aim at the Bank of England's money programmes, following criticism from green campaigners that in the wake of the first Covid-1 9 lockdown last year the central bank did not place enough 'green strings' to the financial and lend supporter it offered to struggling high carbon companionships, such as airlines.

Going forward, the Bank should therefore ensure it includes climate and nature objectives in future pandemic-support programmes, such as requiring that recipients publicly disclose the climate threats facing their business in line with the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosure specifications, according to the report. It should also be given a specific mandate to help drive the net zero transition, and reduce the carbon intensity of its corporate ligament portfolio, the report added.

Meanwhile, the report says the government should ensure its proposed National Infrastructure Bank( NIB) escapes a same fate to its effective predecessor - the Green Investment Bank - which was sold off to the private sector in 2017. It calls for an "unequivocal guarantee", potentially in law, that the NIB will remain a populace academy for the long term, adding that it should be given a mandate to promote projects focused on nature recovery, in addition to its proposed net zero mandate.

'Opportunity to reset'

The government has repeatedly sought to position its pandemic recovery plans as an opportunity to build a greener economy, particularly given the UK is set to co-host the critical COP2 6 UN climate change summit in Glasgow later this year. Last-place time, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised to "build back better" from the crisis, before unveiling his 10 Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution in the autumn.

But amid several adjournments to crucial cyberspace zero programs - such as the Transport Decarbonisation Plan - as well as the contentious withdrawal of funding from the government's flagship Green Homes Grant scheme last week, environmental groups have questioned the Treasury's commitment to delivering a genuinely dark-green recovery.

"What such reports to consider ways to point towards is that some things[ the authorities concerned] have doing well, and some things they may have been disconcerted and haven't gone to plan, " reasoned Dunne. "So there's an opportunity to reset and get back on board."

Caterina Brandmayr, head of climate policy at Green Alliance, said the EAC's report "rightly articulates the spotlight on what the government still needs to do to deliver a light-green recovery".

Harnessing the Budget and forthcoming net zero strategies to deliver an environmentally responsible stimulus would "benefit businesses and communities across the country, and ensure the UK is seen as an environmental world leader as it prepares to host firstly the G7 and then COP26", she said.

Responding to today's EAC report, nonetheless, the authorities concerned vowed it was committed to a light-green retrieval, and foreground its plans to launch the UK's firstly sovereign light-green attachment this year and acquaint mandatory climate danger revealings across the economy by 2025.

"We're committed to building back better and greener from the pandemic, which is why the Prime Minister's Ten Point Plan will employ the UK at the forefront of the world-wide lettuce industrial coup and make hundreds of thousands of green occupations, while the Treasury's Net Zero Review is examining how the transition to net zero should be funded, " the government said in a statement.

Green homes award fiasco

But concerns and confusion continue to surround the government's flagship programme that was meant to be at the heart of its much-trumpeted 'green recovery' agenda.

The PS1. 5bn Green Homes Grant scheme was launched last-place summertime in a bid to provide discount vouchers that would reduce the cost of energy efficiency modernizes on homes. However, the arrangement has suffered from a multitude of difficulties from the beginning, with entrants facing administrative hurdles in accessing the programme and procure accredited tradespeople to carried out under the residence refurbishes, while there have been reports of installers themselves losing money, faculty, and business due to late pays through the scheme.

And in a surprise move last week the government sanctioned plans to remove potentially over PS1bn from the scheme's budget that remains unspent by the end of March. The authority blamed householders' reluctance to have tradespeople enter their homes as the primary motive of the Green Home Grant Scheme's travails, but this explanation was roundly disagreed by business groups and political opponents.

The EAC has kept a close gaze on the scheme, earlier this month revealing simply over 21,000 vouchers towards the cost of home improves have been issued to date, a fraction of the government's ambition to hand out 600,000 lettuce improvement vouchers.

Dunne too told BusinessGreen that in the evidence he had seen from applicants to the scheme nobody had cited Covid-1 9 frights related to installers participating their residences as a core problem. "The fact that merely a third of those applying for vouchers have had them approved tells a slightly different story, " he said.

For its part, the government said it would "continue to bring forward bold measures to cut emissions, with plans to invest PS9bn in improving the energy efficiency of buildings forming part of our wider commitment to end our contribution to climate change by 2050 ".

However, while BusinessGreen has repeatedly sought to confirm whether or not the government's goal of improving 600,000 residences through the Green Homes Grant scheme remains in place given its drastically reduced budget, BEIS has yet to provide clarification.

The EAC today therefore reiterated its demand for the authorities concerned renovation the anxious arrangement, and give it beyond its current March 2022 cut-off date in order to provide businesses and householders the long-term certainty they need to hire and train additional installers and submit applications for vouchers.

Fund evaluation

Whether the UK government can deliver a truly light-green convalescence from the current economic crisis remains to be seen, but with its leadership on climate change under the spotlight in the run up to COP2 6, it will be under significant influence to back up its encouraging 'build back better' rhetoric with discernible activity. The latest controversy over the Green Homes Grant, recent failures scrutinizing this reputational impairment incurred by allowing the progress brand-new coal mines, and the huge pipeline of long-awaited light-green policy decisions, have all served to undermine confidence that Minister have the key priorities straight-out, with the Treasury widely considered to be one of the key barriers to the development of a believable light-green recovery strategy.

For Dunne, however, the window for action is still open, and the coming weeks and months now offer a critical opportunity to set the government's recovery efforts on an daring lettuce track. The upcoming Budget and following few months therefore look set to provide the clearest exam hitherto of whether the government's light-green recovery predicts will be met.

"That will be the time to assess how effective[ the government's endeavours] ought to have, " said Dunne.

Read more: businessgreen.com