0370 270 6000

Reaction: Landmark ruling sees government's net-zero strategy ruled 'unlawful'

22 July 2022

Today the High Court has declared that the Government’s Net Zero Strategy is unlawful, as it doesn’t explain how the targets will be met. The ruling follows similar decisions in other countries and reflects a growing willingness to consider and rule on climate-change related claims in court.

As the UK has just recorded its hottest day ever, we are reminded of the importance of tackling climate change. Whilst the decision is being seen by many environmentalists as a success, it is important to watch how the Government reacts to this. It is clear that unambiguous, quantified policies are required, especially in relation to reducing emissions from agriculture and domestic heating. However, the current economic issues are putting pressure on the Government to reduce costs for households, and it is not certain that politically the Government is prepared to make such strong commitments.

The Government now needs to decide whether to remake its Net Zero Strategy, or appeal to the Court of Appeal. These are uncertain times in relation to what the UK’s net zero policies will look like. How the new PM approaches this will is likely to be key to whether we meet our legal net zero obligations.

This was first published by IFA Magazine on 19 July.

Focus on...

Press releases

Browne Jacobson appointed onto London Boroughs Legal Alliance panel

Browne Jacobson has been appointed on to London Borough’s Legal Alliance (LBLA) legal services framework after successfully bidding for their core legal work. The new three year contract which has a one year option to extend and is worth potentially £16m in fees, commenced on 8 July 2022. It replaces the Boroughs’ existing panel arrangement. The appointment will see the firm advise on areas such as regeneration, litigation, commercial and real estate.



Challenges from potential Foster Carers and Adopters

Our immediate future shows a renewed focus on foster care. We’re going to see a new nationwide-drive to recruit foster carers and the implementation of a more robust, and potentially financially-generous system for encouraging friends and family to care for their relatives (both when extended families cannot cope or provide care for any reason).


Legal updates

Economic activity for the purposes of the Subsidy Control Act 2022

In July the long-awaited statutory guidance on the Subsidy Control Act 2022 was published in draft form. The Draft Guidance is currently subject to consultation which ends on 10 August 2022 and may therefore change before the final version is published.


Published articles

Rolls Royce SMR ambitions will bring Hinkley like benefits to regions

It’s great news that engineering giant Rolls-Royce has now shortlisted six possible locations for its first factory relating to small nuclear power stations. This is the first of three offsite assembly factories building key elements of the next generation small modular reactor power stations (SMRs). Construction will begin once Rolls-Royce receives the go ahead to build a fleet of SMRs in the UK.