The United Kingdom (UK) is an advocate for action to address short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) in addition to action on long-lived climate forcers, and has already undertaken work to this end in a number of different fora.

Domestic activities

The UK's Climate Change Act 2008 introduced a binding reduction target requiring the UK to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% by 2050 against 1990 levels.

UK national action on SLCPs includes taking active steps to minimise methane emissions from agriculture, including working with industry, for example the agriculture industry-led Greenhouse Gas Action Plan. Methane emissions from waste have also been significantly reduced, including by the UK’s Environment Agency working in partnership with landfill companies. UK methane emissions are expected to reduce by 60% of the 1990 level by 2020.

A comprehensive EU regulatory regime, underpinned by UK Regulations, has been in place since May 2006 to control fluorinated greenhouse gas emissions as part of the EU’s commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. This has had a considerable impact leading to a continuing reduction in leakage rates. Future significant emissions reductions are in prospect in the UK due to technological change, including increased efficiency and market penetration of lower/no GWP refrigerants. UK HFC emissions are expected to reduce by 24% of the 1990 level by 2020.

UK air quality policy has historically focussed on particulate matter rather than its black carbon fraction, however since the inclusion of black carbon in the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution the UK has begun development of a national black carbon inventory. The UK also committed to reducing emissions of fine particulate matter (of which black carbon is a component) in 2020 by 30% (on the 2005 baseline), equivalent to a 14% reduction in exposure of the population to fine particulate matter.

International activities

The UK is a partner of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, and is funding research through into the effectiveness of, and business models for, clean cookstoves. In addition to action through the UNECE Convention on Long Range Transboundary Air Pollution on black carbon, the UK has also provided funding for cleaner alternatives to current mehods for residential lighting and heating in India which will result in reduced emissions of black carbon.

The UK is also promoting sustainable agricultural practices, for example through the SAIN partnership, which are expected to result in significant reductions of methane emissions. In addition to this, the UK is actively involved in furthering our scientific understanding of SLCP emissions, effects, and potential mitigation options.More information

Please see the following UK Government websites for further information:


United Kingdom
Back to Top