How much faith should we put in the Governments Net Zero Strategy: Build Back Greener?

The Government’s strategy document, released in October, sets out its policies and proposals for decarbonising all sectors of the UK economy to meet the target of Net Zero by 2050.

Posted on 09 November 2021.

But how much substance is there behind Boris Johnson’s claims that we can build back greener without having to change any of our behaviours? JRP Senior Energy and Sustainability Consultant, George Barnes, has critiqued the first 3 chapters of the report and has some serious concerns about many aspects of the Government’s proposed routemap to Net Zero.

A group of wind turbines in the waterDescription automatically generated with medium confidenceBoris: For years, going green was inextricably bound up with a sense that we have to sacrifice the things we love. But this strategy shows how we can build back greener, without so much as a hair shirt in sight. In 2050, we will still be driving cars, flying planes and heating our homes, but our cars will be electric gliding silently around our cities, our planes will be zero emission allowing us to fly guilt-free, and our homes will be heated by cheap reliable power drawn from the winds of the North Sea. And everywhere you look, in every part of our United Kingdom, there will be jobs. Good jobs, green jobs, well-paid jobs, levelling up our country while squashing down our carbon emissions.

George: The tone of this statement alone is troublesome, let alone the substance. Informal Boris to the rescue! How? By not changing behaviour one bit. By doing the norm….but with alternative fuels. Let’s drive, let’s fly, let’s increase heat supply let’s subsidize broken systems! Not a good start.

George has analysed some key features of the strategy document and gives his own views of the strengths and weakness in the following areas:

  • Power
  • Fuel supply and hydrogen
  • Industry
  • Heat and buildings
  • Transport
  • Natural resources, waste and fluorinated gases
  • Greenhouse gas removals

To read George’s analysis, click here.

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