Inclusion of international aviation and shipping emissions in carbon budgets

07 November 2012

The Energy and Climate Change Committee has written to the Government to warn that a decision to exclude aviation and shipping from the UK’s carbon accounts would water down the UK’s 2050 climate target set out in the Climate Change Act 2008

This is a move that would not be consistent with an ambition to avoid a global temperature rise of 2°C, internationally recognised as a dangerous threshold.

Committee Chair, Tim Yeo MP, said:

“The aim of the Climate Change Act was to demonstrate British leadership in the international effort  [for the UK to do its bit] to avoid a global temperature rise of 2°C, widely regarded as a dangerous potential tipping point for the climate.”

“If aviation and shipping emissions are now excluded, the overall target reduction for all other sectors would need to be increased from 80% to around 85%.”

“Although we are talking about percentages and degrees here, we must not lose sight of the fact that the ultimate cost of failing to keep temperature rises below 2°C could be measured in floods, mass migration, economic disruption and chaos.”

Image: iStockphoto

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