“Action has failed to keep pace with the worsening reality of climate risk”
The Climate Change Committee (CCC) is an independent, statutory body established under the Climate Change Act 2008. Its job is to advise the government on emissions targets and to report to Parliament on progress made in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and preparing for and adapting to the impacts of climate change.
On 16 June, it published a report “Independent Assessment of UK Climate Risk” prepared by the Adaptation Committee. This sets out the priority climate change risks and opportunities for the UK. More than 60 risks and opportunities have been identified, fundamental to every aspect of life in the UK covering our natural environment, our health, our homes, the infrastructure on which we rely, and the economy. The report offers the following key conclusions ;“Alarmingly, new evidence shows that the gap between the level of risk we face and the level of adaptation underway has widened. Adaptation action has failed to keep pace with the worsening reality of climate risk.
“The UK has the capacity and the resources to respond effectively to these risks, but it has not yet done so. Acting now will be cheaper than waiting to deal with the consequences. Government must lead that action.
“The Committee reports on the full set of 61 risks and opportunities. These must be considered in the next set of National Adaptation Plans, due from 2023.
“The Committee identifies eight risk areas that require the most urgent attention in the next two years. They have been selected on the basis of the urgency of additional action, the gap in UK adaptation planning, the opportunity to integrate adaptation into forthcoming policy commitments and the need to avoid locking in poor planning, especially as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Committee recommends ten principles for good adaptation planning that should form the basis for the next round of national adaptation plans. These are intended to bring adaptation into mainstream consideration by Government and business.”
Visit www.ukclimaterisk.org to find all of the outputs from the UK Climate Risk Independent Assessment.