New Publication: Addressing the climate policy gap in Wales

Published 31/07/2019   |   Reading Time minutes

This report addresses the climate policy gap in Wales. It draws from the author’s expertise and decade-long interdisciplinary research on energy and climate policy, energy transitions and ecological economics, as well as from his participation in the multi-million, EU-funded WiseGRID project on smart grids. The report is also based on a thorough scrutiny of the Welsh political and climate policy context and existing legislative framework, the work of the National Assembly for Wales Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee, the Welsh Government’s related policy documents, including the most recent Prosperity for All: A low carbon Wales, and the UK Committee on Climate Change advice and reports, including the very recent report Net Zero: The UK’s contribution to stopping global warming. The report contributes insights and conceptualisations of the climate change challenge and its interaction with other key political and policy priorities, and sources evidence and best practices from around the world.

After mapping the current policy framework, the report argues for bolder climate targets in line with climate science and proportionate carbon budgets to the effect of carbon neutrality before 2050. This advice is premised upon the strong legal grounds of the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015, compelling economic arguments regarding the costs of climate inaction and the merits of front-loaded action, and developing political grounds emanating from civil society pressure and the need for a more pivotal role for the state.

The report elaborates on the co-benefits of an ambitious climate policy, and provides ample evidence and global best practices that can be utilised in Wales. It also discusses Welsh climate policy within the broader growth paradigm Wales follows, and sets out different energy transition pathways.

The report also recalibrates current policy schemes and proposals on the table. More specifically, it qualifies the need for an energy company for Wales, and delineates the role and the tasks it could play, and looks into the potential for rendering the Zone Demarcation Scheme more engaging with local communities/ citizens. Caught within the current Brexit conundrum, the report also points at a number of implications Brexit can bear for Welsh climate policy.

New Publication: Addressing the climate policy gap in Wales (PDF, 1732KB)

The briefing has been written by Dr Filippos Proedrou from the University of South Wales under Senedd Research’s Academic Fellowship Scheme to support Assembly Members in their climate change scrutiny.

Senedd Research acknowledges the support of the University of South Wales that enabled Dr Proedrou to take part in this fellowship.