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New report warns that decarbonisation necessitates major cuts to health and education spending.

Former Conservative Party leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith has called for an “honest and open debate” on Net Zero, warning that politicians have not sufficiently scrutinised the requirements, and saying that they must level with the public about the sacrifices required.

He also highlights the UK’s lack of energy security and Western Europe’s reliance on Russian gas.

Sir Iain’s comments, in the foreword to a new report published by the Global Warming Policy Foundation, reflect growing alarm among Conservative backbenchers about a possible electoral backlash in the wake of the cost of living crisis, and a new awareness of the threat the Net Zero project represents to national security.

The report, by Professor Michael Kelly FRS, examines the scope of the Net Zero project and considers the financial, resource and manpower requirements, concluding that the political and economic upheaval it would necessitate make success a practical impossibility. 

Sir Iain Duncan Smith said: 

“We owe it to the citizens of the UK to take a long hard look at the path to be taken. Policymakers must be honest and open with the British public about how much all this will cost them and how much change to our everyday lives may be required.”

Professor Kelly said: 

“The scale of this project is, in terms of resource and time, so great that a war footing and a command economy will be essential for its delivery”

Professor Michael Kelly: Achieving Net Zero (pdf)