Cutting Carbon, not Jobs

09 July 2010

Installing solar panels on a roof

Photovoltaic roof – the Centre for Alternative Technology Source: Centre for Alternative Technology

A new report published by the Centre for Alternative Technology highlights a path for a zero carbon transition by 2030. For the first time a comprehensive energy strategy has been produced that could reduce emissions to zero for all greenhouse gases and across all sectors.

“ zerocarbonbritain2030 shows how the right mix of wind power, hydro, solar, biomass - plus an intelligent grid to manage demand, can ‘keep the lights on’ and supply the energy the country needs– with major win-wins across the economy.” Paul Allen, Centre for Alternative Technology

The report, aims to integrate thinking across a range of sectors and identify potential for 'Powering Down' through reducing demand and 'Powering Up' renewables to 100% by 2030 with no requirement for nuclear energy. There are key priorities identified, including a 63% reduction in energy use for transport by moving from petrol and diesel powered vehicles to electrically powered ones. Rail and bus services replacing domestic and short haul flights.Two- thirds reduction in long haul aviation using kerosene fuel produced from coppiced biofuels in the UK.

Another key area is buildings: ZCB2030 proposes that a 50% reduction in heat and electricity demand could be achieved by insulation of all of Britain's un-insulated cavity walls and lofts, and using natural construction materials such as wood, straw and other natural materials will  lock away C02.

The report reveals that Britain can grow most of its own food whilst still producing biomass for heating, electricity and transport fuel. Land can be used to mop up residual emissions through carbon sequestration. A 80% reduction in livestock products that generate 82% of green house gases in the agricultural sector. Non-livestock products generate more food and have a higher nutritional value.

An offshore wind farm

Ewea offshore wind farm

We have the lifetime of this parliament to break Britain's fossil fuel addiction. The BP fiasco underlines how important it is that we act now. If we do, we can enjoy greater energy security and a more sustainable, dynamic and resilient economy. If we don't we will lurch from one energy and environmental crisis to another on a downward spiral. zerocarbonbritain2030 shows us how to begin the Great Transition and reveals its huge potential." Andrew Simms, policy director of nef (the New Economics Foundation)

The comprehensive nature of the report looks at how to implement behaviour-change. It also emphasises how Britain can move into a future with new industries and hundreds of thousands of new jobs in a sustainable way.

Zero Carbon Britain 2030 is published by the Centre for Alternative Technology and is available as a free download or 384 page full colour book priced £39.95 (ISBN 978 1 902175 61 4). It can be purchased from CAT Mail Order (01654 705959) or from any high street or on line book retailer.


Zero Carbon Britain 2030 Report

Blog by Julian Jackson

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