New report sets out how UK and EU Transport Investment is incompatible with 1.5 degrees. The report quantifies the massive scale of transport infrastructure investment plans across the UK and EU and how this fails to align to existing climate targets. This highlights that whilst heavy goods transport, shipping and aviation are some of the hardest to decarbonise, demand for these transport modes are not being managed or constrained in line with climate commitments.
The report calls on transport to have far stronger carbon targets so that is able to help drive down carbon emissions across the rest of the economy, rather than holding back the transition to zero carbon. A radical overhaul of transport infrastructure spending plans is needed so that funding is redirected from expanding capacity, to decarbonising existing transport. The report is framed ,using the Zero Carbon Policy Toolkit introduced in Green House’s August 2020 report, Trade and Investment Requirements for Zero Carbon.
Jonathan Essex, one of the report’s authors, said:
Facing up to climate reality requires governments to stop driving transport growth. It is just as irresponsible to expand transport - which leads to burning of more petrol, diesel, kerosene and heavy fuel oil - as to dig a new coal mine in Cumbria. In both cases new infrastructure stands in the way of phasing out the burning of fossil fuels. Governments must ensure investment is redirected from expanding transport to decarbonising what we have already.
This work forms part of a wider project led by the Green European Foundation exploring what a ‘climate emergency economy’ would look like through a rethinking of trade, industry and infrastructure investment. The project involves Greenhouse Think Tank in the UK alongside Groenlinks in the Netherlands, Green Foundation Ireland as well as partners in Finland and Bulgaria.
Published by the Green European Foundation with the support of Green House think tank. GEF Project coordinator: Sien Hasker, Green European Foundation. This publication has been realised with the financial support of the European Parliament. The Polden Puckham charitable trust have contributed to report design costs. The European Parliament is not responsible for the content of this project.
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