CCC Insights Briefing 5: Monitoring progress in reducing the UK's greenhouse emissions

Europe and Central Asia
Climate Objective
Planning and Implementation Activity
Governance and Stakeholder Engagement
Monitoring and Evaluation
Barriers Overcome
Case Summary

The UK Climate Change Act requires the Climate Change Committee (CCC) to produce an annual assessment of progress towards the UK’s emissions reduction targets. This independent assessment documents the changes in UK greenhouse gas emissions, the factors driving those changes, developments in technology and policy, and projections for future UK emissions. Where the CCC identifies risks that future carbon budgets may not be met, the reports make recommendations to Government for how they can get progress back on track.

The annual cycle of CCC progress assessment ensures Government is regularly and transparently held accountable for delivering on its legislated targets and has created an opportunity for adaptive policymaking that responds to emerging challenges in a timely and evidence-based way.

This briefing discusses how the CCC approaches its annual assessments of progress in reducing UK emissions. It focuses on how the CCC has aimed to identify problems early enough for them to be addressed before an emissions target is missed. Assessment of progress in adapting to climate change is covered in a separate briefing as part of this series.

This briefing is structured in four sections:

  1. Progress monitoring under the UK Climate Change Act
  2. Indicators of progress towards a low-carbon economy
  3. Assessing the effect of climate policies
  4. Assessing economy-wide progress