Human contribution of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere continues to represent one of the greatest threats to the natural world and human populations globally. Related extreme weather occurrences including flooding and high temperatures, as well as consequent water scarcity, food insecurity and disease already cause mass disruptions to human life. Over the last two decades severe weather events have cost on average £1.5 billion per year (Committee on Climate Change, 2018).
Successive governments have developed a new policy and legislative framework to combat rising temperatures and mitigate the risks of increased climate variability. Earlier this year, the Government published its long-awaited 25 Year Environment Plan, with climate change abatement residing at the centre of its strategy. In July 2018, the second National Adaptation Programme (NAP) was released. This included new provisions to build resilience against flooding, drought and coastal erosion. The NAP has pledged to restore degraded eco-systems by creating 500,000 hectares of wildlife-rich habitat. The Government is also investing £2.6 billion between 2015 and 2021 to protect the country from coastal erosion and flooding.
Despite consistent government engagement, numerous challenges still obstruct a comprehensive UK strategy on climate change adaptation and mitigation. The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has warned that only some of the urgent risks identified in its 2017 Climate Change Risk Assessment have been addressed. Moreover, the UK remains the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the EU after Germany, with latest statistics showing the UK was responsible for 11.6% of all EU emissions in 2016 (Eurostat, 2018). Planned enlargement of Heathrow airport has raised further doubts over the Government’s commitment to reduce total emissions by 80% before 2050. The Department for Transport announced the aviation emissions were forecasted to reach 42.8 million tonnes by 2030 following the expansion (DfT, 2017).
In light of the publication of Government’s 25 Year Plan and the latest National Adaptation Programme, delegates will engage with government’s existing approach to climate change adaptation and mitigation. Key national and local government actors, climate change groups and experts will benefit from the opportunity to consider new and existing measures to protect national eco-systems, and safeguard the health and economic well being of the UK population from climate change.
- Analyse the UK Government’s current approach to tackling climate change under the 25-Year Environment Plan 2018 and review progress toward 2050 targets
- Consider the major tenets of the second National Adaptation Programme (2018-2023) and central actions taken to mitigate the risks of climate change
- Explore to what extent the NAP reflects the insights and recommendations of the 2017 UK Climate Change Risk Assessment
- Measure and consolidate progress made by the NAP in delivering climate change adaptation and mitigation
- Discuss the role of private sector actors in contributing to national climate change abatement
- Explore emerging technologies in supporting UK climate change strategy at the national and local levels
- Identify opportunities and risks post Brexit in reducing emissions and protecting national and local eco-systems
- Discuss adaptive measures implemented by the devolved administrations in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, and engage in the sharing of best practices
For more information on this event and to book your place, follow the link to the Public Policy Exchange website
||Registration and Morning Refreshments
||Chair's Welcome and Introduction
Panel One: Adapting to Climate Change: Assessing Existing Policy and Ensuring Preparedness
- The Second National Adaptation Programme: Assessing key provisions within the NAP (2018-2023) in promoting resilience and identifying areas for improvement
- Reducing the Risk of Climate Change: Consider the 2017 Climate Change Risk Assessment and the extent to which the NAP has embedded core recommendations
- Improving Monitoring: Explore the necessity for increased use of time-bound targets and new metrics to ensure the aspirations of the NAP are fulfilled
- Community-led Planning: Consider measures to promote local-level and cross regional collaboration following Government consultation on new local capital plans
- Sharing Key Learning Outcomes: Reconciling insights from climate change adaptation programmes implemented by the devolved administrations
||Morning Coffee Break
||Open Floor Discussion and Debate with Panel One
Panel Two: Reducing Carbon Emissions: Tackling the Causes of Anthropogenic Climate Change
- Delivering on Emissions Targets: Assessing compliance with carbon budgets and consider progress toward the 2018-2023 target
- Transitioning to a Low Carbon Economy: Promoting innovative business models to secure environmental responsibility
- Pursuing Low-energy Solutions: Discuss the benefits of emerging technologies and how they will change the fight against climate change
- Creating Local Leadership: Sharing best practices across local authorities for driving decarbonisation in your area
- Delivering a Green Brexit: Assessing the implications of Brexit on UK strategy
||Afternoon Coffee Break
||Open Floor Discussion and Debate with Panel Two
||Chair's Summary and Closing Comments
*Please note that this programme is subject to change without notice*