Letter from the Chair to potential respondents to guide evidence responses

Jane Davidson, Chair of the Wales Net Zero 2035 Group

First of all, a huge thank you for being interested in helping in the work of the Wales Net Zero 2035 Challenge Group. We are a group of independent, passionate individuals who have been invited by the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru, through their formal Co-operation Agreement, to explore how the country can speed up its transition to net zero, and whether amending Wales’ current target to 2035 from 2050 is possible and could deliver benefits. 

We know that the world is currently not on track to avert disastrous impacts from climate change and that Wales will need to prepare to meet such impacts. We also know that planned changes, particularly planned over a decade, are far more likely to have positive changes for people and places, than short term, piecemeal responses. Such planned changes will need new policies, new laws, new investment opportunities, new ways of engaging with communities, new outcomes. We therefore have a huge opportunity to advise the two political parties on which pathways could deliver the most significant emission reductions whilst also creating the long term, preventive benefits for people and nature required by the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.    

Since we are looking for the most imaginative solutions to inform our recommendations on 10-year deliverable plans from 2025 to 2035, we have decided to set 5 broad and ambitious challenges to:  

  • imagine what a fairer, more sustainable future looks like for the Welsh nation.  
  • find the best examples of transformative change from Wales and the world and test them in Wales;  
  • challenge the Welsh Government and Senedd (Welsh Parliament) to go further and faster;  

How can you help us?  

Our challenge to you is to invite you to send us your big ideas on how we could do things differently in Wales, with a particular focus on bringing down our emissions within a planned timescale while also looking after our communities and restoring nature. We would particularly like to hear from you about what would need to be in place to create clear pathways to make your ideas happen.   

Evidence can be submitted at: https://netzero2035.wales/evidence-submission/evidence-submission-portal/  

The Challenges 

The five Net Zero 2035 Challenges areas are: 

  1. How could Wales feed itself by 2035?   (https://netzero2035.wales/the-challenges/1-how-could-wales-feed-itself-by-2035/)
  1. How could Wales meet energy needs by 2035 whilst phasing out fossil fuels?    
  1. How could Wales heat and build homes and workplaces by 2035?   
  1. How could people and places be connected across Wales by 2035?   
  1. What could education, jobs and work, look like across Wales by 2035?    

What are we asking for?  

Challenges will be launched individually and we will publish the dates on this website. We know the Challenges are interlinked, so when you respond, we’d also love to hear views about what also needs to happen across other Challenges to enable your proposals.  You may also make separate submissions for other Challenges.  

In the Annex (https://netzero2035.wales/evidence-submission/evidence-submission-annex-for-information/) , you will see the five ways of working and the seven goals on the face of the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015. Please look to maximise positive outcomes across as many goals as possible with your suggested pathways. Please read the text of the goals carefully to make sure your response reflects their intent.   

Some of the ideas you may want to send to us might not be in the responsibility of the Welsh Government. Please note we are  considering public policy recommendations with regards to both Welsh and UK Governments.  

It is important to remember that our job is to see where we can accelerate action towards Net Zero in Wales by 2035 (not 2040 or 2050) so that our work can help politicians prioritise their actions over the next decade.  We are therefore keen for you to be very clear about what could be done: the pathway(s) to get there by 2035.  

What happens next?  

Each challenge will open for your views for 2 months. Following initial calls for evidence, the group will publish draft findings for each challenge area for further comment alongside independent evidence provided by the Wales Centre for Public Policy at Cardiff University prior to putting our final report together. The Group’s work is scheduled to run until summer 2024.  

We look forward to hearing from you. If you have any queries, please contact the Secretary to the Group, Stanley Townsend on stan.townsend@wcpp.org.uk 

Chair, Wales Net Zero 2035 Challenge Group