Manchester Climate Change Agency’s AGM took place last month, where city progress was once again reviewed and carbon reduction targets for Manchester and the UK were mapped out.
Newly available city-focused low carbon targets (SCATTER Report) now show that to play its part in avoiding catastrophic climate change, Manchester must reduce carbon emissions by 13% (UK by 15%) year-on-year, from 2018 until 2038.
But what exactly does this mean and what action does it require?
If we continue to emit carbon dioxide (and other greenhouse gasses) at the current rate (average 3% reduction per year), Manchester will have used up its entire carbon budget by 2028 – only 10 years from now. The carbon budget is set to ensure Manchester is aligned with the Paris Agreement target of remaining below 2°C global average warming. The budget is intended to run until 2100, providing us with enough time and scale for change, whilst undergoing rapid decarbonisation.
Failure to act on these targets now will leave us in a worse position financially and environmentally every day, month, and year we delay (more information on the cost of delayed action here).
We’ve already achieved all the ‘low hanging fruit’, the easy wins in carbon reduction. Now we require a much deeper shift to a low-carbon culture in which every individual, organisation and local authority has a role to play.
Engaging with Carbon Literacy is a key part of that, as it equips participants with knowledge of:
In Greater Manchester, Carbon Literacy is an integral part of the carbon emissions reduction strategy. It is recognised that without wide-spread engagement on climate change and how greenhouse gas reduction can lead to a positive future, it is unlikely that we will meet our city-region reduction targets.
Animated GIF by Oskar Walin.