Following today’s announcement (June 12th) that the Government will legislate to set a net zero greenhouse gas emissions target, Rachel has urged the next Prime Minister to ensure policies are in place to meet this target and decarbonise the economy.

The draft legislation sets a target date of 2050 for the UK to reach net zero emissions. This world-leading target will bring to an end the UK’s contribution to climate change.

It also makes the UK one of the first major economies to legislate for net zero emissions.

Today’s announcement continues the UK’s proud record of climate leadership. 11 years ago, the UK was the first country in the world to set legally binding long-term targets to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. And most recently, the UK has shown leadership in its delivery of emissions reductions – most recently, through the first coal-free fortnight on our power system since the industrial revolution.

And today during Prime Minister’s Questions, Rachel asked Theresa May if she agrees that her successor must ensure we have the right policies to reach net zero emissions and decarbonise our economy.

Rachel said:

“Once again it is the UK leading the way and showing real leadership on the issue of climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“I’m sure this is an announcement my constituents will welcome. I often hear from constituents who are concerned about climate change, and I share their worries about the future of our planet, but the UK’s decision to legislate for net zero emissions shows the Government is taking this issue seriously too.

In response to Rachel’s question, Prime Minister Theresa May said:

“I’m very proud that we are ensuring we make our contribution to dealing with climate change by laying the legislation for a net zero target by 2050.

“This puts us on a path to become the first major economy to set a net zero emissions target in law.

“Once again, this is the United Kingdom leading on this issue of tackling climate change and this is delivering on the Conservative promise to leave the environment in a better state for the next generation.

“This is about long-term climate targets. We’re proud of the world-leading record we have. But, I absolutely agree that it is vital we continue this work and make sure we protect our planet for generations to come.”

Between 1990 and 2017, the UK reduced its emissions by over 40% while growing the economy by more than two thirds.

Rachel added: “We must all work together to tackle this serious environmental challenge. Climate change is one of the most profound global challenges we face. The UK is playing its part in tackling it, and I now hope our action to legislate for a net zero target will see other countries follow suit. We cannot do this alone.”