Net Zero Society public dialogue
Government Office for Science
In 2019, the UK Government committed in legislation to ‘net zero’ – reducing UK net emissions of greenhouse gases by 100% (relative to 1990) by 2050. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) launched its Net Zero Strategy in 2021 and, as part of this strategy, committed to the publication of a Foresight report ‘A Net Zero Society: Scenarios and Pathways’ by the end of 2022. The Foresight report will allow BEIS and all departments with net zero policy on their portfolio, to evaluate their policy development against the various potential future changes in societal and behavioural factors.
In delivering the Net Zero Society report, GO-Science has used futures techniques to produce four different scenarios for societies that have met net zero by 2050. Each of the four scenarios is described in a two-page narrative and considers different aspects of the future societies, including how work, travel, the economy, technology and lifestyles may differ.
This public dialogue is an additional strand to this developing work to ensure that the Foresight report and scenarios is presented in the context of public perspectives, aspirations and concerns. It will provide an additional layer of public evidence to supplement the scenarios and provide an important lens with which to view them.
Beyond the dialogue delivery, an objective of the work will also be to explore how public dialogue can contribute to Foresight work in GO-Science and share learnings on public dialogue and futures work more widely with the policy/research community.