The UK is committed to targets of reducing carbon emissions by 34% from 1990 levels by 2020 and 80% by 2050; this target is underpinned by carbon budgets, to ensure the UK is on course to meet its goal. These budgets provide the UK with emissions limits for consecutive five-year periods targeting specific carbon emission reductions on 1990 levels.
The first three carbon budgets to 2022 have already been set, and require a c.35% reduction on 1990 levels by 2020. The UK is on track to achieve them and by 2012 had delivered a 27% reduction.
The fourth carbon budget covers the period 2023-2027 and has also been set at a c.50% reduction by 2025.
The fifth carbon budget covers the period 2028-2032 and will be set in 2016.