Theresa May has announced her plans for the UK to produce net zero greenhouse emissions by 2050, overturning the previous pledge of the Climate Change Act 2008, to slash them by 80 per cent by the same year.
May has said the new plan will be reviewed in five years and in the interim, the government will look to a youth steering group to advise them, making this look all the more like a pandering publicity stunt to gain favour given that she's drawn the ire of a large majority of the public during her time at Downing Street.
The UK is the first G7 country to make such a promise, most likely because it's fairly drastic for such a short timeline, with Labour's Rebecca Long-Bailey saying that while it's "welcome in theory" the reality of the situation is another matter entirely.
"In practice it comes from a Conservative government that is off track to meet existing climate targets, that has no plans for legislation or investment needed to cut emissions, and that has dismantled the UK renewable energy sector while pushing fracking.
"The government is a bit like a marathon runner with the wrong shoes, the wrong diet and no training expecting to break the world record; it looks less like ambition and more like delusion."
Chancellor Philip Hammond suggests that implementing the necessary changes needed to meet the overly ambitious target could cost int he region of £1 trillion, which of course, isn't going to materialise out of thin air. May hasn't touched on where she plans to get the money from, so we can only speculate on whether it's going to be siphoned off from the budget for existing sectors like the NHS or fire services, that are already having a time of it, or whether we'll see a bump in taxes to cover the cost.
Danish author and President of the Copenhagen Consensus Center think tank, Bjorn Lomborg, said, "Mr Hammond is right to highlight the cost - and in fact, he is likely to be underestimating the real price tag."
It's difficult to see how reaching net zero emissions by 2050 won't have a huge impact on other industries, like intensive farming and air travel. Homes will have to convert their heating and light systems, and petrol and diesel vehicles will need to be phased out.
The proposal has the potential to be fast-tracked if both parties agree, but any future leadership could overturn the decision with a majority Commons vote. [BBC]