U.K.'s CO2 emissions dip is just half the story

Feb 06, 2019, 1:16 AM EST
(Source: Tim Green/flickr)
(Source: Tim Green/flickr)

The global greenhouse gases emissions are going in one direction and Britain’s in the other. The U.K. has cut down its carbon emissions by nearly 38% since 1990, courtesy mass closure of coal-fired plants, higher renewable energy generation and a decline in overall energy demand from industry and private citizens.

The total greenhouse gases emissions (GHG) in Britain have dropped 42.1% compared to 1990 levels, but the policy flip-flops could still keep the country from achieving its long term goal of cutting CO2 emissions by 80% by 2050, writes the BBC.

The positive development cannot mask the fact that Britain has recently veered off the right track. For example, the government has virtually banned all new onshore wind farms, commuter services are starved of cash and civil aviation capacity is being expanded indiscriminately – all of which could have a cumulative impact on emissions figures.

Environmentalists contend that the drop in Britain’s emissions cannot be viewed in isolation from the corresponding rise in other countries, where the U.K. has outsourced its manufacturing and heavy industry. However, an analysis by Carbon Brief claims that the argument no longer holds water, notes Tree Hugger.