The Liberal Democrats have pledged an approach of “if we know what we need to do, let’s do it now” when it comes to action on climate change.
On 14 September, Shadow Climate Change and Environment Minister, Wera Hobhouse, told the party’s annual conference that they would target 80% of the UK’s electricity to come from renewables by 2030. This would include solar power, marine energy, as well as both offshore and onshore wind. Under the Liberal Democrat’s vision, there would be no new petrol or diesel vehicles sold from 2030 onwards and all new homes would have to have a minimum energy efficiency requirement from 2021.
In areas where routes to reach net zero are not yet available, Hobhouse said the party would take an approach of “pro-innovation”. With regards to aviation, this would mean finding alternatives to jet fuel. As it is a process that could take up to 15 years, Hobhouse added that the party would not support any UK airport expansions during this time. The Liberal Democrat agenda also included the development and deployment of new technologies for carbon capture and storage and decisions taken on hydrogen and a hydrogen grid.