Recognizing the urgency to take immediate action in protecting the global climate, the 21st Conference of the Parties, held in December 2015 in Paris, made a groundbreaking achievement in adopting the goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C. Under the Paris Agreement, for the first time climate action was anchored in the context of international law. This requires countries to make their own unique contribution to the prevention of dangerous climate change. The next crucial step to follow this agreement is the rapid implementation by the signing parties of concrete measures to make their individual contributions to the global goal.
The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) has been keeping track of countries’ efforts in combating climate change. The CCPI has been an important tool in contributing to a clearer understanding of national and international climate policy. The CCPI measures how well countries are on track to the global goals of the Paris Agreement. It does so by not only comparing countries by their development and recent trends in the three categories “GHG Emissions”, “Renewable Energy” and “Energy Use”.
The UK ranks number eight in this year’s CCPI. A strongly decreasing emissions trend over the last years, mainly driven by a shift from a production-based to a service-oriented economy, has resulted in a high performance in the index‘ emissions category. The newly passed clean growth strategy includes a commitment to off-shore wind, and to coal phase-out. The plan also includes policy on clean vehicles which could be effective in further driving decarbonisation.
However the UK’s long-term 2030 targets for emissions and renewable energy are not ambitious enough for a well-below-2°C pathway.
Full CCPI 2018 Document