The UK will not meet its targets to avert climate change unless urgent action is taken to slash emissions from cars and houses, according to the government’s official advisers.
A decade on from the country’s climate change act, greenhouse gases from electricity generation are falling but virtually every other sector has failed to pull its weight.
In its latest report, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) warned the lack of support for simple, cheap measures such as insulating homes and planting trees would mean skyrocketing future costs for everyone.
The much-anticipated appraisal of the nation’s climate action comes in the wake of controversial decisions on Heathrow expansion and the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon.
Environmental groups and ministers have been highly critical of both actions, and have called the newly released report a “wake up call” after these government decisions showed “how empty their green rhetoric is”.
Striking a far more critical tone than previous reports, the committee said the government must learn from the lessons of the past 10 years and commit to tough new regulations and strict enforcement.
CCC chairman Lord Deben said housing and car companies “should be ashamed of themselves”, and accused construction companies of “cheating” their customers by not providing effective insulation for homes.