A summary of the Committee on Climate Change's response to the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy

Yesterday, the Committee on Climate Change published their response to the government’s Clean Growth Strategy. The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) is the independent watchdog on the government’s climate change policy. The CCC is responsible for ensuring that the government sets measures which will deliver on our legally binding commitment to an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The CCC regard the Clean Growth Strategy as the clearest indication of this government’s commitment to decarbonisation yet. It puts the low carbon economy at the heart of the UK’s industrial strategy and recognises that a low-carbon transition is essential to the UK economy.

While the CCC applauds the ambition shown, they warn of delivery risks from the lack of detailed measures and highlight gaps in meeting the fourth and fifth carbon budgets.

The CCC indicate that, over the next 2-3 years, the main policy campaigns from BEIS and Defra should focus on areas including;

1) The decarbonisation of heat;

2) Significant contracting of low carbon electricity through Contract for Difference (CfD) auctions;

3) Introduction of an industrial energy efficiency scheme.

There are a number of other policies which the CCC say requires more detail and clarification, such as the phasing out of petrol/ diesel cars by 2040.

The CCC policy recommendations also include a performance based labelling scheme for commercial buildings. They highlight that "it is vital that the performance gap between design and actual performance is addressed" in new buildings. This is something that we fully support at Verco. In our recent work with the Better Buildings Partnership, BSRIA, Arup and UBT we have been conducting pilot studies to test a 'Design for Performance' approach for UK prime rented office developments which mirrors the ground-breaking NABERS Commitment Agreement used in Australia.

Click to view the full report from the Committee on Climate change. Alternatively, here is a useful infographic summarising the report.