The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) report on 1.5C degrees of warming highlights the urgency of action on climate change and the disastrous threat posed to the planet by rising global temperatures.
We can all take action to address the climate threat. Energy Saving Trust provides advice and support to help UK households cut their carbon emissions by improving energy efficiency, installing renewable energy, participating in community clean energy projects and choosing cleaner transport.
Individual UK citizens can do more to address climate change when there is a strong government programme. The IPCC findings suggest we may need a more ambitious national, long-term carbon saving target. But first, the government must introduce the policies that can deliver on our existing national commitments to reduce carbon emissions.
The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) reported in July 2018 that the UK government is “not on track” to meet the next decade’s carbon saving targets and that new, funded policies are urgently needed. Cutting the carbon we use in homes is highlighted by the CCC as a key area in which government needs additional policies. With advice, incentives and regulations, UK government needs to be doing much more to help us all take action on carbon emissions in our homes.
Steps to save carbon at home
Cutting down on heat waste. Fitting insulation delivers major carbon savings, by reducing the amount of energy we need to heat our homes.
Using renewable energy to power or heat our homes – for example solar panels or heat pumps – delivers low cost, and low carbon energy. For some people, participating in a community renewable energy project, sharing the costs and benefits of a larger scale renewable energy system, such as a wind turbine, can be a great way to work together to tackle climate change.
Changing the way we travel. Cutting down on flying is important. An electric vehicle is a greener choice when you come to change your car.
Choosing energy efficient appliances and being careful about when we use appliances is also important, but thanks to effective government policies over the past few years, many home products and light bulbs are now energy efficient. So switching off lights and appliances when you’re not using them will save some carbon and help with your energy bills, but we’ll all need to do more than that to make big cuts to carbon emissions.