The Climate Change Act 2008 established a target for the UK to reduce its carbon emissions by at least 80% from 1990 levels by 2050. This target is believed to be an appropriate UK contribution to reducing global emissions so that global warming is limited to as little as possible above 2°C.
To ensure that regular progress is made towards this long-term target, including a 35% reduction by 2020, the Act also established a system of five-yearly carbon budgets, to serve as stepping stones on the way.
The Climate Change Act also required the Committee on Climate Change to be established as an independent, statutory body to advise the UK Government and Devolved Administrations on emissions targets and to report to Parliament on progress.
The Committee has a clear and useful website, which includes information on emissions and action for the following sectors:
- Aviation (GHG)
- Shipping (GHG)
- Agriculture and land use (GHG)
- Waste (GHG)
- Industry (CO2)
- Buildings (CO2)
- Surface transport (CO2)
- Power (CO2)
Their website also has a useful FAQ page providing information on the science, technology and costs and benefits.