New Centre for Alternative Technology Report says Britain could cut greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2030

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In the process creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs and regaining energy security

offshore wind

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

A new report published by the Centre for Alternative Technology today, Wednesday 16 June 2010, including input from thirteen universities, twelve research bodies and eight key industry players, highlights a path for a zero carbon transition by 2030. For the first time, 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. We can ‘keep the lights on’ and supply the energy the country needs– with major win-wins across the economy.” Paul Allen CAT

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.

“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)

Key priorities of the report include:
Transport:
63% reduction in energy use for transport could be achieved by:

  •     A switch from petrol / diesel powered vehicles to electric / battery powered vehicles.
  •     Rail and bus services replacing domestic and short haul flights.
  •     Two- thirds reduction in long haul aviation using kerosene fuel produced from coppice in the UK.

Buildings:
50% reduction in heat and electricity demand could be achieved by:

  • Insulation of all of Britain's un-insulated cavity walls and lofts.

-Using natural construction materials such as wood, straw and other natural materials will lock away C02.

Land Use:

  • 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 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.

Policy
The report also recognizes that action in the UK alone is not enough, making the transition will require unprecedented collaboration on a global scale. The report:

  • Emphasises the urgent need for an international agreement
  • Explores different policy options for emissions reduction including cap and trade, carbon tax and tradable energy quotas

"CAT’s report shows that a zero carbon Britain is both desirable and achievable. The first stop on the journey should be a 10% reduction. We have tens of thousands of individuals and businesses already working towards this target. CAT's report should serve as an inspiration to us all." Eugenie Harvey. Director 10:10UK

Press Launch, 16th June 9.30am, Sunley Room
The Royal Institution of Great Britain
21 Albemarle Street
London
W1S 4BS

zerocarbonbritain2030 will be available free to download from http://www.zerocarbonbritain.com

For further information, copies of the report or to arrange to speak to any of the authors contact Kim(dot)bryan(at)cat(dot)org(dot)uk 07770881503

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