Business as usual is no longer an option
A ‘business as usual' scenario will expose North East England to increasing risks from climate change. Urgent change is needed to prepare us to face whatever the future holds, and meet Government's obligations under the Climate Change Act and international agreements.
There are significant challenges ahead but we have the means to meet them
North East England faces significant challenges. We need to:
o Adapt and cope with the inevitable impacts of climate change, which will affect all areas of life. However, we have the skills and knowledge to develop innovative techniques to ensure that we can cope with a changing climate.
o Mitigate and prevent the impact of climate change. Reducing our emissions now is critical.
Adaptation and mitigation are equally urgent. Without adequate and timely action, both will become increasingly challenging and expensive.
Climate change presents significant opportunities
North East England is already investing in new industries including clean fuels, renewable power and green technology. Climate change can also bring opportunities to existing businesses. For example, changing weather patterns may bring advantages to the leisure and tourism sector while North East farmers can diversify by growing different crops. Reacting positively to climate change will help businesses gain a competitive edge.
North East England leading the way
North East England is committed to tackling the climate change and is leading the way. Hundreds of innovative and inspirational projects are taking place across the region addressing climate change in the academic, business, domestic and technology sectors. The region already has a strong evidence base that helps us to understand the scale of the challenge we face.
Policy needs to drive action
North East England is already in a strong position to tackle climate change but needs to ensure policies drive action forward. Without taking preventative measures we face considerable consequences including economic loss, severe and unpredictable weather and risks to health.
We must all take responsibility and work together
Climate change affects everyone and we must all play our part. Local authority, business and community leadership, alongside individual action are essential to success. We will make better progress if we are prepared to take responsibility and work together.
Behaviour and attitudes need to change
It is critical that North East England continues its innovative work in developing positive ways of changing attitudes about climate change. Engaging with people in ways that create long-term shifts in values is vital for North East England - and for us all - to meet the climate change challenge.
For more information, please contact Jennifer Atkinson.