A letter signed by 132 MPs and 51 peers has urged Prime Minister Theresa May to set a net zero emissions target for the UK economy.

The letter was delivered to Downing Street by Mary Creagh, Chair of the House of Commons’ Environmental Audi Committee, and Conservative MP Simon Clarke.

MPs who have signed the letter include Liberal Democrat Leader Sir Vince Cable, former Labour Leader Ed Miliband, and Green MP Caroline Lucas.

The politicians want the UK Government to extend the current target for an 80% cut in emissions from 1990 levels by 2050 so that the UK would have net zero emissions.

Cuttings bills for businesses

Ministers have already asked the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) for advice on the issue.

“Given the existing advice from the CCC, the likely conclusion of the upcoming Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, and that other countries have set net zero targets with dates between 2030 and 2050, including France, Norway, Sweden, Iceland and New Zealand, we believe this must be a target of net zero for greenhouse gases before 2050,” the letter said.

“A net zero emissions target, fully implemented, will cut energy bills by improving the efficiency of our homes and businesses, it will get rid of the exhaust pipe emissions that pollute the air we breathe, and it will help to bring about the restoration of our natural habitats so they become stores of carbon, from forests to peatlands.”

> Read the letter