Actions taken this decade will be crucial in mitigating the worst impacts of climate breakdown. Yet, according to our Climate Gap research, we are not cutting emissions fast enough across any of our key lifestyle areas - including consumer goods such as clothing, furniture and electrical items.
Consumer goods and climate change
The reductions in the emissions from consumer goods are the latest government figures, but are those occurring in the first year of the Covid pandemic. It shows that change is possible, but more recent figures, when they become available, are likely to be higher.
A key finding of the report was that it is not possible to manage an economy rationally towards urgent climate goals without meaningful and timely performance data. Pleasingly, the CCC appears to have adopted this recommendation to government in its latest report.
Of the 40 companies we check each year for full Scope 3 emissions reporting, which includes the production and processing of materials going into products and the use of products after sale, the proportion reporting rose from 60% to 70%. However, of those that had year-on-year Scope 3 figures to compare, more were going up than down. Some may have got less carbon intensive, but if growth outstrips efficiency, we aren’t getting anywhere.