Explore the future with DECC’s carbon calculator

There are many different ways the UK can achieve its target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050. Do you rely entirely on renewable energy sources? Do you develop a strategy using a mixture of nuclear and carbon capture and storage? Or do you focus on cutting energy consumption, rather than changing methods of energy production?

A series of different pathways can be explored using the DECC’s carbon calculator. You are able to modify two columns of sliders; one which gives different scenarios for energy consumption, and one which allows different scenarios for energy production. For each factor, you can select a few options between ‘no change to recent trends’, and a level of change which is described as a ‘heroic effort.’

What’s clear after a quick play with the calculator is that achieving the government’s target is going to be difficult – making effort described as ‘achievable’ by ‘most stakeholders’, the UK would only cut emissions by 42% by 2050.