Co-benefits of climate change mitigation in the UK: What issues are the UK public concerned about and how can action on climate change help to address them?
Topics: Mitigation, Energy and Low-Carbon Futures
Type: Briefing paper
Publication date: March 2019
This briefing, and accompanying animation, shows how action on climate change can have multiple benefits across society, and is relevant to UK public concern, and associated government priorities. It highlights the role that cities and devolved regions can play in capitalising on these co-benefits, and suggests that incorporating them into the decision-making process may help to bring about faster, deeper cuts in carbon emissions.
- Governments face a significant challenge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while meeting competing objectives such as improving public health and reducing unemployment.
- There are multiple benefits – known as ‘co-benefits’ – to taking action on climate change that are not always adequately considered or valued in the policy and decision-making process.
- Benefits of climate change mitigation for the UK include improvements in public health, reduced NHS costs, greater energy security, growth in the low-carbon jobs market and a reduction in poverty and inequality.
- Cities and devolved administrations are best-placed to capitalise on the co-benefits of climate change mitigation as they frequently hold relevant budgets (e.g. health, transport, housing) and understand how different policy priorities impact on each other.
- Faster, deeper reductions in greenhouse gas emissions may be achieved by ensuring that public sector decision-making adequately considers the co-benefits of climate change mitigation.
Download: Co-benefits of climate change mitigation in the UK [PDF]