The Welsh government has today (12 July) launched a consultation on reducing carbon emissions in the country by 2030.
By law the government is required to reduce emissions in Wales by at least 80 per cent by 2050, compared to levels in 1990. There are also interim targets for 2020, 2030 and 2040.
The Achieving our low carbon pathway to 2030 consultation suggests a “series of ideas” to reduce greenhouse gases and focuses on key areas including agriculture, industry, power, transport and waste, to help reach the interim target of reducing emissions by 45 per cent in 2030.
Wales has seen a growth in greener energy solutions in recent years, but a large proportion of energy still comes from fossil fuels.
The UK Committee on Climate Change (CCC) supports the view that the Welsh government needs to cut carbon emissions faster than it has done so far but accepts this will be harder in Wales than in other parts of the UK due to the nature of its industry.
The consultation document reveals that the Welsh government has set a more ambitious 2030 target than the EU’s pledge under the Paris Agreement.
Potential solutions to bringing down carbon emissions include setting higher energy efficiency standards for new builds, developing a charging network that encourages early take-up of electric vehicles and accelerating the development of renewable generation while encouraging local ownership.
The consultation was launched by cabinet secretary for energy, planning and rural affairs, Lesley Griffiths, who hopes action on climate change will “lift people out of fuel poverty”.
She said: “The Paris Agreement not only sets the context for tackling climate change, but for the decarbonisation of the global economy.
“Action on climate change will result in cleaner air and water and will not only improve our health and well-being, it will lift people out of fuel poverty and create new opportunities for green industries.
“This consultation will open up a dialogue on how we tackle the challenge of climate change together in Wales.”
Economy and transport secretary, Ken Skates, said he hopes the Welsh economy will take advantage of the transition to a low-carbon society.
He said: “From embracing new modes and mechanisms of transport, to pioneering and manufacturing green technologies, there is huge potential for growth in a low-carbon economy.
“That is why my economic action plan is helping business to future proof, innovate and become carbon light, or carbon free, right at its heart.
“We must ensure Wales takes advantage of the transition to a low-carbon society so we can continue to compete with the rest of the world and ensure that the benefits of a low-carbon economy are felt in communities right across Wales.”
The consultation ends on 4 October.