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Government to set out climate action plan ahead of COP26 climate summit

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Westminster in London UK, view from the air.
Westminster in London UK, view from the air. Photo by Ricardo Frantz via Unsplash.
  1. UK government is expected to release a swathe of Net Zero strategies on Tuesday 19th of October, setting out its climate action plan to decarbonise the UK economy.
  2. These announcements are expected to include an over-arching Net Zero Strategy, a Net Zero Review, Green Finance Roadmap and Heat & Buildings Strategy. The Spending Review and budget will follow on 27th October.
  3. These announcements will be a critical litmus test for climate credibility and leadership ahead of the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow – and all eyes are on the UK.

Story on UK climate action plan

Ahead of the upcoming COP 26 climate summit to be held in Glasgow, the UK is expected to launch on Monday next week a series of major strategies on how the UK will decarbonise the economy as part of a climate action plan. These long-delayed strategies will be critical to ensuring the UK gets on track to net-zero.  

The Government was heavily criticised by the Climate Change Committee in its annual assessment of climate action progress earlier this year. It concluded that the UK was not on track to net-zero, that emissions reductions had flatlined in most sectors and the Government needed to ‘get real on delivery’.  

All eyes are on the UK to see what the Net Zero Strategy and Spending Review deliver. The credibility of the climate action plan is vital if the UK is to fulfil its leadership role at the COP 26 summit, when world leaders will gather in what is considered a make-or-break moment to strengthen commitments to decarbonise and prevent catastrophic climate change damage.  

The value created by getting public investment on track to net zero investment would be significant – including 217,000 jobs by 2025, warmer homes and cheaper energy bills to level up across the whole of the UK. It is important that the Government considers these benefits in full alongside the upfront capital costs. 

These strategies will be followed on 27th October by the Spending Review & Budget. There has been tension between Number 10 and the Treasury this year, with the Chancellor failing to deliver so far on the scale of public investment needed to fulfil the Prime Ministers vision for sparking a green industrial revolution. To get on track to net zero public investment in the net-zero transition needs to double, including an additional £11.7bn of investment in energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation for UK homes for the next three years. 

Available for comment

Please contact for comment directly (expertise in brackets): 

Heather McKay, Policy Advisor (Net Zero Review, Net Zero Strategy, Green Finance) 

m: +44 (0) 770 727 5359, heather.mckay@e3g.org  

Colm Britchfield, Researcher, Clean Economy (Green homes and Energy Efficiency) 

m: +44 (0) 7542 865 564, colm.britchfield@e3g.org  

Ed Matthew, Campaigns Director (Net Zero Strategy, Spending Review) 

m: +44 (0) 7827 157 906, ed.matthew@e3g.org  

Kate Levick, Sustainable Finance Director (Green Private Finance, UK Green Taxonomy) 

m: +44 (0)7860 861225, kate.levick@e3g.org  

Notes to Editors

  • E3G is an independent climate change think tank accelerating the transition to a climate safe world. E3G specialises in climate diplomacy, climate risk, energy policy and climate finance. -> About 
  • For further enquiries email press@e3g.org or phone +44 (0)7783 787 863 

The expected timeline of announcements is:

19th October 

  • How the Government will answer the ‘who pays’ question (Net Zero Review)  
  • How the Government will pay for the transition (Financing Chapter in Net Zero Strategy)  
  • What policies the Government will use to support sectoral transition (Net Zero Strategy)  
  • How the Government intends to decarbonise Heat & Homes (The Heat and Buildings Strategy) 
  • How the Government will give private finance the clear signals it needs to invest in the transition at scale and capture the upside of net zero (Green Finance Roadmap)  

27th October 

  • What level of public investment and fiscal incentives the Government will allocate for the transition (The Comprehensive Spending Review & Budget).  

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