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Will the budget include large zero carbon investments?

This year’s budget is due to be released this week. It is hoped that the budget will include plans for some long term investments in zero-carbon solutions.

A report regarding this has been published by the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

The report details that in order for the UK to rebalance its economy, address inequalities and meet net zero emissions, it is essential for the new budget to include major investments in zero-carbon infrastructure.

Furthermore, it goes on to recommend that investments should be initially made in areas that will struggle to decarbonise such as transport, industry and buildings.

In addition to this, it also calls for the budgets in the Conservatives’ 2019 election manifesto to be put into practice. This includes; £6.3 billion to reduce energy waste in buildings, £1 billion for the infrastructure for the charging of electric vehicles and £800 million in carbon capture and storage.

The climate and economic challenges faced by the UK need long-term policies that should be implemented with a clear timeline and accountability. The formation of this plan could solidify the UK’s leadership in the transition to a zero-carbon economy.

The report made the following 8 recommendations:

  1. Establishing a National Investment Bank with a focus on managing and reducing risk in infrastructure projects to leverage private finance. Action lead: HM Treasury
  2. Harnessing the UK’s green finance capabilities to deliver on innovation and investment demands across all regions. Action lead: Green Finance Institute
  3. Creating a shared global agenda of investment in zero-carbon infrastructure and innovation among Parties at COP26, leading by example. Action lead: COP26 Team within the Cabinet Office in close consultation with a range of other government departments
  4. Overhauling technical and governance processes to ensure public investment is aligned with the target for net zero emissions and resilient. Action lead: HM Treasury
  5. Giving clearer recognition to the roles of anchor institutions such as universities and further education colleges as drivers of place-based, sustainable growth. Action leads: Department for Education, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, UK Research and Innovation
  6. Ensuring that policy decisions in infrastructure, innovation and skills are consistently aligned with the aim of sustainable and inclusive growth. Action lead: HM Treasury in close consultation with local government, and by extension communities, across the UK
  7. Utilising public sector procurement to pilot sustainable technologies. Action leads: HM Treasury and the Crown Commercial Service
  8. Setting out a timetable with key funding commitments into the medium term to deliver net-zero emissions, with lines of accountability for delivery. Action lead: HM Treasury

To read the full report, you can download it here.

Source: LSE & Grantham Institute 


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