The UK Government risks “derailing” the country’s transition to a low-carbon economy if it doesn’t take more action on climate change, a new report has warned.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC), the watchdog setup under the 2008 Climate Change Act, said ministers’ inaction is making it hard for businesses the “grasp the opportunities of the transition”.

While the report noted progress had been made in cutting emissions from power stations, the CCC warned emissions from transport and building stock were still rising.

The committee also highlighted the lack of action on making the UK more resilient to the effects of climate change, such as flood-prevention measures and restoring natural habitats so they absorb more water.

‘Urgent’ further action

CCC Chairman Lord Deben, who as John Gummer served as minister under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, said: “The impact of climate change on our lives and those of our children is clearer than ever.

“The UK has shown global leadership on climate change, but progress will stall at home without urgent further action.

“New plans, for a new Parliament, are needed as a matter of urgency to meet our legal commitments, grasp the opportunities offered by the global low-carbon transition, and protect people, businesses and the environment from the impacts of a changing climate.”

> Download the report's summary