Climate Policy

Key International and National Climate Change Policy Timeline

Climate change presents a wide range of risks and opportunities to our natural environment, infrastructure services, built environment, economy and other vital societal support structures.;xNLx;;xNLx;Whilst working to limit the effects of climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, we must adapt. Historical emissions of greenhouse gases have made climate change inevitable, regardless of our emission reductions.

2008-11-26 00:00:00

Climate Change Act 2008

The Climate Change Act establishes a legally–binding framework for the UK Government to address and combat climate change. The Climate Change Act commits the UK Government by law to: Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 100% of 1990 levels (net zero) by 2050. This includes reducing emissions from the devolved administrations (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland). Set legally–binding ‘carbon budgets’ to act as stepping stones towards the 2050 target. A carbon budget is a cap on the amount of greenhouse gases emitted in the UK over a five–year period. Set up an independent expert body, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) to advise the government and devolved administrations on emissions targets, and addressing and preparing for climate change. It reports to Parliament on progress made and also publishes independent analysis. Assess the risks and opportunities from climate change by producing a UK Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA) every five years. UK administrations – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are all required to produce a National Adaptation Programme (NAP) every five years, setting out their objectives, proposals and policies in response to the risks and opportunities identified in the CCRA

2012-01-25 00:00:00

1st UK Climate Change Risk Assessment

The Climate Change Acts 2008 requires the UK government to publish and provide Parliament with a UK–wide climate change risk assessment (CCRA) every five years. The assessment presents an analysis of key climate change risks and opportunities across all sectors of the UK economy. In June 2021 the Climate Change Committee published the third Independent Climate Change Risk Assessment Evidence Report. It sets out the priority climate change risks and opportunities for the UK. The CCRA3 includes: Technical Report National Summaries Sector Briefings  Research and Supporting Analysis 

2013-07-01 00:00:00

UK National Adaptation Programme

The National Adaptation Programme sets out what government, businesses and society are doing to become more climate ready.

2014-01-20 00:00:00

1st Northern Ireland Climate Change Adaptation Programme

The Northern Ireland Climate Change Adaptation Programme ("the Adaptation Programme") was published in January 2014. It contains the Northern Ireland Executive’s response to the risks and opportunities identified in the Climate Change Risk Assessment ("CCRA") for Northern Ireland, which was published in January 2012, as part of the overall UK CCRA.

2015-12-12 00:00:00

Paris Agreement Reached to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius

The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris, on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016. Its goal is to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels. To achieve this long-term temperature goal, countries aim to reach global peaking of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible to achieve a climate neutral world by mid-century. The Paris Agreement is a landmark in the multilateral climate change process because, for the first time, a binding agreement brings all nations into a common cause to undertake ambitious efforts to combat climate change and adapt to its effects

2017-01-13 00:00:00

UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 2017

The UK government responds to the independent risk assessment carried out by the Climate Change Committee, endorsing the 6 priority areas proposed by the adaptation sub-committee.

2019-06-27 00:00:00

UK legislates for net zero emissions by 2050

On 27 June 2019, the UK legislated to introduce a target for achieving at least a 100% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, compared to 1990 levels by 2050. In doing so the UK became the first major economy to pass net zero emissions into law.

2019-09-30 01:33:29

2nd Northern Ireland Climate Change Adaptation Programme (NICCAP2)

The Northern Ireland Climate Change Adaptation Programme 2019–2024 was published in September 2019 and sets out Northern Ireland’s adaptation approach and actions for the period 2019 – 2024. This programme addresses the government’s response to the climate change risk and opportunities as identified in the UK CCRA 2017 Evidence Report Summary for NI. For the first time, the NICCAP also includes an outline of how civil society and local government will contribute to addressing these climate change risks and opportunities. Climate NI was commissioned by DAERA to work with civil society and local government to develop their response to the risks and opportunities outlined in the UK CCRA 2017 NI Summary. The information collated and presented by Climate NI aims to: * Outline the important work planned by civil society and local government to contribute to the delivery of the outcome objectives of NICCAP2; and * Raise awareness among civil society and local government of the necessity to undertake organisational vulnerability assessments, planning and actions to manage climate change risks and opportunities. The Civil Society and Local Government Adapts Chapter developed by Climate NI provides a summary of the adaptation contribution from civil society (academic, voluntary and community, and private sectors) and local government.

2021-06-16 00:00:00

UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 3

The Climate Change Acts 2008 requires the UK government to publish and provide Parliament with a UK–wide climate change risk assessment (CCRA) every five years. The assessment presents an analysis of key climate change risks and opportunities across all sectors of the UK economy. In June 2021 the Climate Change Committee published the third Independent Climate Change Risk Assessment Evidence Report. It sets out the priority climate change risks and opportunities for the UK. The CCRA3 includes: Technical Report National Summaries Sector Briefings Research and Supporting Analysis

2021-11-13 00:00:00

Glasgow Climate Pact

The world saw almost 200 countries coming together in the UK to commit to take action on climate change and forge the Glasgow Climate Pact. This outcome meant COP26 kept the goal of global temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees alive. At the same time, COP26 cemented progress on finance for climate action, adaptation and loss and damage.

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