The Guardian view on getting to net zero: the crunch is coming | Editorial | The Guardian
Sun 27 Jun 2021
Targets are all very well. But not if there is no way of reaching them. In which case, they are a sham. This is the problem now confronting the government. The UK’s stated goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 78% by 2035 compared with 1990 levels is very ambitious. “Remarkable” was the word used last week by Lord Deben (the former Conservative environment secretary John Gummer). He chairs the climate change committee (CCC) that advises the government. Its latest reports make an unflattering contrast between impressive aims and the absence of plans to meet them.
/The impact of Covid on transport has been tumultuous and requires addressing in a number of ways if increased pollution from road traffic is to be avoided. The Labour-led Welsh government struck the right note last week with a promise to freeze all road-building plans. The UK government’s £27bn plans for new roads must now be revised, while London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, should follow Wales’s example by cancelling plans for a new tunnel under the Thames. Higher taxes on flying are unpopular, but necessary if people are to be persuaded to use trains instead. Meat consumption must be reduced.