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Engineers welcome new UK carbon target

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Dr Jenifer Baxter, Head of Energy and Environment at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, said in response to UK Government plans to set a target to cut emissions by 57% by 2032 compared to 1990 levels.

“Government plans to set a firm target to cut emissions by 57% by 2032 is welcome news, and could help provide more certainty for industry to invest in low carbon technologies. However, the target can only be seen as a starting block, as in order to properly tackle the country’s carbon emissions, much more work needs to be done to create a clear pathway, with timeframes and milestones for new low carbon electricity infrastructure to be built, as well as for clear incentives for low carbon technologies to be rolled out in the transport and agriculture sectors.”

Baxter continues, “Currently, it is still unclear what impact technological changes in the transport, heating and agricultural sectors could have on curbing emissions and we need to invest in research and development, as well as demonstration, to ensure we maximise on the potential of UK innovation.”

”The UK’s electricity sector in particular is currently facing a policy vacuum and investors need greater certainty to be able to invest. With the retirement of the majority of the country’s ageing nuclear fleet, proposals to phase out coal-fired power by 2025 and the cut in renewable energy subsidies, the UK is on course to produce even less electricity than it does at the moment.”

Adapted from press release by Francesca Brindle

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