What should the Government do to tackle the climate crisis?
Following two record-breaking heatwaves, a drought and a flood that has displaced millions in Pakistan, shocking events in 2022 alone have demonstrated the urgent need to tackle the climate crisis head on. In addition to helping to slow the climate disaster, Britain must also prepare for now-inevitable changes like increased flooding and wildfires. So, what can the government do?
Make homes more energy efficient
With the ongoing energy crisis, prices are likely to remain high for years to come which means making Britain’s homes more energy efficient has never been more important. These include insulation to keep heat in as well as renewable heating solutions such as Air Source Heat Pumps and Solar Panels.
Failure to implement a programme of home insulation across the country has already cost people dearly. According to research by Carbon Brief, David Cameron’s cuts to funding for green initiatives and energy efficiency have increased energy bills by £2.5 billion.
Scale up renewables – and say no to fossil fuels
While net-zero sceptics insist that renewable energy is unreliable and expensive, wind power is now significantly cheaper than gas derived from fossil fuels. In order to hit net-zero by 2050, significant investment is needed in more wind farms and solar farms to further boost production and allow for reliance on fossil fuels to be scaled down.
Take action on water pollution
The government and water companies have faced increasing criticism in recent years for allowing the dumping of raw sewage into rivers and the sea. The practice is meant to be limited to periods of high rainfall but some companies are under investigation by the Environment Agency for “significant and widespread breaches”. More severe fines and quicker action are needed to discourage water companies.
The UK and England have seen their driest year so far since 1976 which led to large parts of the UK being officially placed into a drought which could last until next year. This is thanks in part to the dryer, hotter weather, and in part to water companies’ failure to stem leakage and prepare for potential drought situations. With climate change causing the world to warm up, droughts are now likely to become a regular phenomenon for the UK which means the country needs to be better prepared which includes fixing and preventing water leakage.