Boris Johnson Announces UK Plan for “Green Industrial Revolution”

London — Five years after deciding to phase out coal use, the UK took steps on Wednesday to address some of the country’s largest greenhouse gas emissions sources within 10 years. Announced plans to discontinue and change new gas and diesel vehicles How people warm their homes.

The plan is expected to be central to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s efforts to pressure other countries to reduce emissions in preparation for the UK’s major climate negotiations next year. And they were an early signal to Joseph R. Biden, Jr. of the presidential election that Britain and the United States might find a common cause, despite Brexit’s looming uproar that Mr. Biden opposed.

Climate activists have cast announcements as Britain’s most ambitious step to protecting the planet since deciding to end the use of coal, but some of the plans remain questionable. ..

This relies on techniques that some analysts are paying attention to, such as the use of hydrogen to heat homes. The overall level of investment is well below the tens of billions of dollars in climate-related spending recently promised by Germany and France. Some analysts also said the plan was not enough to encourage companies to invest in clean energy jobs in the UK.

“Successive British governments have done a great job of enabling us to quickly switch from coal and gas to clean power sources,” said Joss Garman, UK Director of the European Climate Foundation. .. “But this announcement from the Prime Minister is truly the first time we have witnessed a similar level of ambition to curb pollution from heating cars and homes.”

He said it is not yet known if the government is ready to spend enough to meet its ambitious goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

For countries where electric vehicles account for less than 7% of new vehicle purchases, Johnson’s decision to ban the sale of new and diesel vehicles by 2030 has given a strong signal to both consumers and manufacturers. (A minor concession to Toyota, which manufactures several hybrids in central the UK, will allow the UK to sell some hybrids until 2035.)

To help the transition to electric vehicles, Johnson said the government will spend £ 1.3bn, or $ 1.7bn, on installing charging points to allow consumers to buy cars at a more affordable price. He said he would pay hundreds of millions of pounds in grants.

Still, analysts say the government hasn’t done enough to support the production of batteries for electric vehicles, presenting major challenges to the automotive manufacturing industry, which employs 166,000 people in the UK as of 2018. I said that I am doing it. Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union has already plunged the auto industry.

Peter Wells, director of the Automotive Industry Research Center at Cardiff Business School, said: “Without additional government support, the UK automotive industry will struggle to survive the transition to electric vehicles without the entry of additional companies.

By 2030, improvements in electric vehicles and related infrastructure could make it much easier to convince people to buy electric vehicles. But analysts said it remains important that the government not only sets new products and industry standards, but actually influences consumer choice.

The 2030 ban includes gas and diesel delivery vans, which are likely to be the mainstay of the post-pandemic economy. This is a “very clear sign” of the government’s decision, said Sir John Gammer, Sir Deven, chair of the Climate Change Commission, a watchdog that monitors the progress of emission reductions. “If they were just window dressings, they wouldn’t put it in.”

The government has arrived since the UK won a bid to host international climate change negotiations in Glasgow next year (some analysts consider it the most important event hosted by the UK since the 2012 Summer Olympics). We are facing pressure to set high standards for the world to do. leader.

These pressures were eager to raise climate variability issues in his administration, but were only increased by Mr. Biden’s election, when Britain was less obsessed with leaving the European Union.

Some members of Mr Johnson’s Conservative Party, especially those who have allied with his recently resigned chief adviser Dominic Cummings, focused on clean energy in last year’s elections.

But Johnson, who has a history of questioning climate science, is now trying to cast his plans as a boon to work and business in these areas like the Midlands.

Offshore wind farms, which Johnson put on the top of the green list, are helping to create jobs in formerly highly industrialized regions, with oil giants BP and Equinor from industries in these regions. The same is true for plans to recover the emitted carbon dioxide. Pump it to a reservoir below the North Sea.

“Imagine Britain as the Green Industrial Revolution helped raise the bar in the country,” Johnson wrote in the Financial Times on Tuesday night, saying the plan could create 250,000 green jobs. Suggested. “Before riding an electric car, we charge it overnight with a battery made in Midland and use hydrogen to make breakfast.”

In most cases, some cultural wars over climate science that have helped Stimmy behave in the United States are not well established in the United Kingdom.

According to a recent survey by nonprofit Climate Outreach and respected pollster YouGov, only 3% of UK respondents did not believe that climate change was a reality. About 60% of people said that the parties they voted for would want to do more to delay climate change.

“Policymaking needs to keep up with the public’s desire for action,” Garman said.

In addition to road traffic emissions issues caused by road congestion and the sale of sports multipurpose vehicles, the UK is also struggling to reduce emissions by heating infamous leaky homes, analysts said. I will.

To address this, Johnson’s new plan has set a goal of 2028 to install hundreds of thousands of heat pumps each year, a system that is more efficient than regular gas boilers. The government has also expanded its voucher program for people who improve the energy efficiency of their homes and announced investments in testing the use of hydrogen in heating and cooking.

Like Japan and Germany, the UK is increasingly focusing on hydrogen as a way to reduce emissions. The cleanest forms of hydrogen, the so-called green hydrogen, are usually produced from water using clean power sources such as offshore wind, but are still expensive to manufacture. However, supporters say that economies of scale and technological advances will reduce these costs.

The UK nuclear industry, which accounted for 17% of electricity generation in 2019, was also encouraged by government mention of supporting both large and small reactors.

But as the coronavirus pandemic hit the UK economy, the prime minister’s plan included only £ 12 billion, or $ 16 billion in new spending, most of which had already been promised. ..

Nick Mavie, CEO of environmental group E3G, said he suspected that the government was doing enough to attract the private investment needed for a successful green plan. It was. “This can’t get over the bar completely,” he said.

Boris Johnson Announces UK Plan for “Green Industrial Revolution”

Source link Boris Johnson Announces UK Plan for “Green Industrial Revolution”

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