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Case update 01 December 2023

Government stalls on climate transparency as Sunak jets to COP28

We gave Ministers a final chance to come clean over the risks to their plans for net zero. But the Government is trying to buy time before the weaknesses in its climate strategy are revealed.

Rishi Sunak is off to Dubai in his private jet, to speak at COP28. What the Prime Minister won’t tell world leaders during his flying visit is that his Government is currently delaying the publication of a set of assessments which threaten to expose the flaws in its latest net zero plan. 

The Government has rejected Good Law Project’s final offer to settle our legal challenge before we reach the courtroom by publishing these assessments. This is despite the fact that the Secretary of State in charge of net zero, Claire Coutinho, has admitted that as soon as they are mentioned during our upcoming High Court hearing, we can publish them ourselves.

In theory, the Government could apply for a court order blocking their publication, but it’s unlikely that such a last ditch attempt at concealment would succeed.

The Government is desperate to keep these assessments under lock and key. The sooner we can all look at them, the sooner Ministers will have to face up to any shortcomings in their net zero strategy and take action to fix them.

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Is the Government trying to save itself from this embarrassment during COP28?

Rishi Sunak may claim the UK is a leader in tackling the climate crisis, but actions speak louder than words. Instead of making sure his plans to reach net zero are fit for purpose, he keeps kicking the can down the road.

  • Good Law Project’s challenge is part of a wider, multi-pronged legal challenge against the Government’s latest net zero plan, with Friends of the Earth and ClientEarth. Anything you can give to support this work will help us make positive change.