CCC to advise the Government on its third assessment of UK climate change risks

The UK Government has formally asked the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) to prepare an independent Evidence Report to support the UK’s third comprehensive assessment of the risks and opportunities from climate change.

The 2008 Climate Change Act requires the Government to produce a UK Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA) every five years in order to fully assess the current and future impacts of climate change. The first and second such assessments were published in 2012 and 2017 respectively. The third will largely draw on the CCC Adaptation Committee’s independent Evidence Report, due to be published in the summer of 2021.

The Evidence Report – funded by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – will look closely at a number of key areas that require urgent action over the next five years. It will build on previous analysis undertaken by the Committee during its work to complete the second CCRA Evidence Report. The third Evidence Report will be supported by new research, part-funded by the UK’s Research Councils, including projects on thresholds in the natural environment, future water availability, future flooding, how climate-related risks interact, and how behaviour change can affect risks and opportunities.

A number of organisations are already involved in developing this research. The CCC has also awarded a contract to a consortium of experts led by the University of Exeter and the Met Office, to prepare the technical chapters for the Evidence Report.

Kathryn Brown, Head of Adaptation at the CCC, said:

“We are delighted that Defra and the devolved administrations have asked the Committee on Climate Change to prepare the third UK Climate Change Risk Assessment Evidence Report.

“Climate Change is impacting our lives now and understanding the related risks is critical in helping the UK prepare, manage and adapt to the potential for increased flooding, drought, heat, sea level rise and severe weather. The report will also consider the possible opportunities for the UK from a warming climate.

“Over the next 3 years, the Adaptation Committee will work with hundreds of climate change and industry experts and organisations to deliver this critical piece of work and we’re looking forward to that challenge.”