The GW4 Alliance, a research consortium of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter universities, has launched a collaborative project aimed at accelerating decarbonisation across South West England and Wales.
“Accelerate to Net Zero” aims to turn the region into a “whole-system net zero testbed” where solutions to the challenges of climate change mitigation can be modelled, trialled and developed.
The project will start with a series of workshops focussed on the social and economic implications of net zero policy-making across key areas including energy, transport, land use and food.
Academics and public, private and third sector stakeholders will seek to better understand the challenges and priorities faced by different sectors across the region and develop answers to questions such as:
- How can people have safe, efficient, and affordable homes in areas they wish to live?
- How can everyone access a balanced nutritious diet, that doesn’t cost the earth?
- What changes are required around policy making to have positive and long-lasting effects?
- How can we support a green recovery, protecting and providing jobs in a circular economy?
- What changes would be needed for society to adopt cleaner transport?
Professor Jonathan Knight, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) at the University of Bath and GW4 board chair said: “Without greater successful interventions dedicated to supporting transformations towards net-zero emissions, climate change will have a catastrophic effect on society.
“However, achieving net zero is a complex and global challenge, which will require unprecedented activity and integration of UK research and innovation into all sectors of society.
“Our whole-systems solutions will address socioeconomic inequalities and together with our partners we will produce a shared vision which delivers for the region in its fullest sense and achieves accelerated and equitable transitions to net zero.”
More information about the project is available on the GW4 website.