The UK’s ambitions to be a Net Zero nation by 2050 have been laid out in the government’s Net Zero Strategy.
Building on last year’s 10 Point Plan, the UK Net Zero Strategy sets out an economy-wide plan that aims to support British businesses and consumers make the transition to clean energy and green technology.
The government believes its measures will ‘unlock up to £90bn of private investment by 2030 and support 440,000 jobs’.
As part of its strategy, the government has made an extra £350m available to support the electrification of UK vehicles and their supply chains. Another £620m is for targeted electric vehicle grants and infrastructure, particularly local on-street residential charge points.
In heavy industry, an extra £140m is being made available through the Industrial and Hydrogen Revenue Support scheme to accelerate industrial carbon capture and hydrogen, which is expected to ‘bridge the gap between industrial energy costs from gas and hydrogen’ and help green hydrogen projects get off the ground. To this end, two carbon capture clusters – Hynet Cluster in North West England and North Wales and the East Coast Cluster in Teesside and the Humber – have been selected to lead Track 1 of a programme to decarbonise industry from 2025.
In a statement, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “The UK’s path to ending our contribution to climate change will be paved with well-paid jobs, billions in investment and thriving green industries – powering our green industrial revolution across the country.
“By moving first and taking bold action, we will build a defining competitive edge in electric vehicles, offshore wind, carbon capture technology and more, whilst supporting people and businesses along the way.
“With the major climate summit COP26 just around the corner, our strategy sets the example for other countries to build back greener too as we lead the charge towards global net zero.”
Other measures set out in the UK Net Zero Strategy include an extra £500m towards ‘projects to develop the green technologies of the future’, £120m towards the development of nuclear projects through the Future Nuclear Enabling Fund, £3.9bn of new funding for decarbonising heat and buildings, and a move toward commercialising sustainable aviation fuel.
Commenting on the announcement, Chris Ball, MD of Nuclear and Power at Atkins said: “The scale of the challenge to achieve net zero is greater than any engineering programme ever delivered, from the build rate required to decarbonise power by 2035 to the scale and pace of the programme required to retrofit buildings and transform our transportation systems and infrastructure. The demand for skills and resources and the pressure on supply chains cannot be under-estimated.
“We have long called for a whole system approach to delivering net zero and the need for an Energy System Architect to oversee such a complex overhaul of such critical infrastructure.”
The Net Zero Strategy will be submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as the UK’s second Long Term Low Greenhouse Gas Emission Development Strategy under the Paris Agreement.