Climate Change Committee report now out on ‘Land use: Policies for a Net Zero UK’

A vitally important document for these times. Find the full report here and the Guardian take on it here.

Key points:

Net Zero requires a transformation in land use across the UK. The report sets out a detailed range of options to drive emissions reductions in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
• Increase tree planting – increasing UK forestry cover from 13% to at least 17% by 2050 by planting around 30,000 hectares (90 – 120 million trees) of broadleaf and conifer woodland each year.
• Encourage low-carbon farming practices – such as ‘controlled-release’ fertilisers, improving livestock health and slurry acidification.
• Restore peatlands – restoring at least 50% of upland peat and 25% of lowland peat.
• Encourage bioenergy crops – expand the planting of UK energy crops to around 23,000 hectares each year.
• Reduce food waste and consumption of the most carbon-intensive foods – reduce the 13.6 million tonnes of food waste produced annually by 20% and the consumption of beef, lamb and dairy by at least 20% per person, well within current healthy eating guidelines.

Some concerns voiced on our FB page include this one about priorities: ‘Demand for housing and other economic activity is met before land is used for emissions reduction’ (p34). The worry is the housing issue and economic growth outweighing CO2 reduction as a priority.  To follow the debate please look at our FB page rather than commenting here.

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