Summary of the Net-Zero Strategy

Summary of the Net-Zero Strategy

The Net-Zero Strategy is a 368-page document detailing the government’s priorities for supporting the transition in the economy and plans for job growth whilst reducing emissions from major emitters such as transport, industry and power generation. Supposedly, the policies and support brought with the Net-Zero Strategy will create up to 190,000 jobs by 2025, and up to a further 250,000 jobs in addition by 2030, leveraging a possible £90bn of private investment by that date.

In terms of reducing emissions, the Strategy addresses several pillars: Power, Fuel and Hydrogen, Industry, Heat and Buildings, Transport, Natural Resources and Waste and Greenhouse Gas Removal with each of these pillars having key commitments listed, some of which are detailed below.

Power

Commitments towards reducing emissions with power generation focus heavily on low carbon generation with plans to have all the UK’s electricity created by low carbon sources by 2035. This would be achieved through the creation of a 40GW offshore wind farm by 2030 and through accelerated deployment of low-cost renewable energy such as solar. A new approach will also be taken regarding electricity networks to incorporate the renewable energy sources and make the networks as efficient as possible. £380m is also planned to be provided to the offshore wind sector, for use in infrastructure, the supply chain and securing jobs.

Fuel and Hydrogen

The Strategy plans to regulate the oil and gas sector with a focus on minimising greenhouse gas production through revised strategies and by working with stakeholders, address barriers to electrification of oil and gas production by the fourth quarter of 2022. Attention also focuses towards hydrogen production, the government aiming to have 5GW of low-carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030. A fund of £240m will be implemented alongside finalisation of the Hydrogen Business Model and Low Carbon Hydrogen Standard in 2022.

Industry

A focus on carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) comes under the industry commitments, a support scheme being set up to fund this business model with a fund of £1b being put towards deploying CCUS. Hopes are to deliver six metric tons of CO2 per year of industrial CCUS by 2030 and to raise that to nine metric tons of CO2 per year by 2035. The ambition is also to replace 50 terawatt-hours of fossil fuels per year with low carbon alternatives by 2035 with the support of a £315m fund to install on-site decarbonisation measures and improve energy efficiency.

Heat and Buildings

The Strategy plans to make low carbon buildings achievable to all through phasing out natural gas boilers by 2035 and ensuring that by 2050 all heating systems will be compatible with net-zero. Heat pumps are planned to be made as cheap as gas boilers by 2030 by growing the heat pump market and supporting installations (600,000 a year by 2028) within a focus on UK production. Large-scale trials of hydrogen as potential low carbon heating source will be decided upon in 2026.

Transport

New petrol and diesel cars will no longer be sold in the UK from 2030. From 2035, new cars and vans will have to emit no emissions on the roads. A zero-emission mandate will set targets for a percentage of new car and van sales to be zero-emission each year, starting from 2024 and a pledge to end sale of all non-zero-emission road vehicles by 2040 will be consulted upon.

The charging infrastructure for electric vehicles is to be made reliable, accessible and meet demands, with a strategy on the infrastructure being released later this year. £3b will be invested into the National Bus Strategy to create more frequent services and support 4,000 zero-emission buses. £2b will be invested into cycle lanes and low-traffic neighbourhoods with hopes of having 50% of all journeys within towns and cities being cycled or walked. There is also the aim to remove all diesel trains by 2040 and achieve net-zero railways by 2050.

Natural Resources and Waste

75% of farmers in England will be engaged with low carbon practices by 2030, rising to 85% by 2035 with new farming schemes being introduced. Woodland creation rates to increase, with the target of tree planting rates reaching 30,000 hectares a year by the end of this Parliament, this rate should be maintained at the least from 2025 onward. At least 35,000 hectares of peatland is planned to be restored in England by 2025, funding from new schemes should achieve 280,000 hectares of peatland to be restored by 2050. A policy roadmap will be created to increase the use of timber in construction in England as well.

Greenhouse Gas Removal

Direct Air Carbon Capture and Storage (DACCS) will receive £100m innovation funding, alongside other greenhouse gas removers. Markets and incentives to support these technologies will also be developed with an aim to incentivise early investment in 2022. The ambition will be set to achieve deployment of at least five MtCO2 a year of engineered removals by 2030.

 

A second blog will be released focusing on the support being given to the economy. The full Net Zero Strategy can be found here.

 

 

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