Latest News & Views

Scottish Government Targets 66% Emissions Reduction By 2032
in Blog
The Scottish government has outlined a new target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 66% by 2032. Reduction targets are measured against a baseline set of figures from 1990. The Climate Change Secretary, Roseanna Cunningham, set out the government's draft climate change plan for the next 15 years which include a fully-decarbonised electricity sector and 80% of domestic heat coming from low-carbon sources. Ministers committed last year to cut harmful CO2 emissions by 80% by 2050, with a new interim...

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Government Must Clean Up Act After Losing Air Pollution Court Case
in Blog
The UK government has been criticised by the Courts, for the third time, for failing to produce an adequate plan to tackle the growing problem of air pollution in a landmark judgment that will force ministers back to the drawing board. Air pollution has become a leading test case for environmental legal activism in the UK due to scientists reporting that as many as 40,000 people a year die from illnesses related to air pollution across the country. A...

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May Sets Out Her Vision Ahead of Upcoming Brexit Negotiations
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Speaking in London today, the Prime Minister, Theresa May, called for a wide-ranging free trade deal with the EU after Brexit. The speech was delivered ahead of the start of negotiations on the UK’s future partnership with Brussels during which it was confirmed that Britain would leave the European Union's single market and customs union. May set out some hard facts about the departure acknowledging that "We are leaving the single market… life is going to be different". This is...

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BEIS Select Committee Calls for Energy Price Cap by Winter 2018
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A report has been published by a BEIS (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) Select Committee on the government’s draft bill to cap on standard variable tariff (SVTs) bills for domestic customers after the Business Secretary asked to scrutinise the legislation before it is presented in Parliament. The legislation has been driven by MPs following requests that the energy sector produced a ‘self-regulated’ response to the threat of a price cap which produced lacklustre results. Suppliers did not take repeated warnings...

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New Energy Legislation – Are You Prepared For 1st April 2018?
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On 1st April 2018, there are important energy industry changes coming into effect. With only a few weeks to go, if you have not already taken action, now is the time. The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) is a set of legal requirements that aim to improve the energy efficiency of commercially-rented properties across England and Wales. From 1st April, it will be unlawful to agree a new lease for a commercial or domestic privately rented property with an...

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The 25 Year Environment Plan – Too Long to Deliver What is Needed Now!
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The Prime Minister has finally revealed the UK's 25 Year Environment Plan following months of anticipation and speculation. Whilst it has received its fair share of criticism there are positive messages in it – in particular the long term strategy to reduce plastic waste. The plan is clearly positioned as a cross Governmental strategy with strong links to the Industrial and Clean Growth Strategies. The 25-year plan is recognition that a comprehensive programme of change is required to address the...

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2017 Environmental Policy Review: Clean Growth for 2018 and Beyond
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2017 was a year of surprises on many fronts and environmental policy certainly followed suit. There have been significant developments on the green policy landscape, for both the UK and the world, which presents a very different picture at the start of 2018 compared to the same time last year. With an uncertain, confusing and potentially damaging domestic and global political setting in January 2017, the international community was in a state of unrest. There was profound concern that the...

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Consultation – Should Landlords Contribute Towards Energy Efficiency Measures?
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The government is proposing to force domestic landlords to contribute towards measures to improve their properties' energy efficiency. In a consultation paper, the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) proposed landlords should pay up to a maximum of £2,500 to bring their properties up to Energy Performance Certificate Band E. Minimum energy efficiency standards, which will take effect from April 2018, will require private landlords to ensure their properties meet Band E. Under the existing “no cost to...

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COP23: Key Outcomes in Bonn 2017
in Blog
The extreme weather events that made headlines around the world certainly gave the annual event a sense of relevance and urgency, but cleaning up, as we all know, is an unglamorous process. Behind the scenes, the work got done, however, and, once one task was completed, another one presented itself. Here’s a rundown of the principal tasks that COP23 got in the bag. Coal was in the spotlight, as Germany came under scrutiny for its continued use. The successful launch...

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Budget 2017: War on Plastic and Diesel but Apathy for Renewables
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The government chose to focus its attention on plastics and diesel vehicles in the Autumn Budget yesterday. Whilst the Chancellor promised more funds to incentivise the uptake of electric vehicles, higher duty for diesel cars as well as measures to tackle the scourge of plastic, it is disappointing that there appears to be apathy toward renewable energy. The Chancellor confirmed there would be no fresh funds for new renewable energy projects levied through electricity bills until 2025 to help keep...

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