What is Net Zero?


The term net zero refers to achieving a balance between the greenhouse gases emitted into our earth’s atmosphere, and the gases removed from it.


This balance will be achieved when the amount of gases we add to the atmosphere is no more than the amount removed: net zero.


First and foremost, we should focus on mitigation – reducing our emissions. To do this we’ll need to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions from transport, homes, energy, agriculture and industry as much as possible.


However, there are some areas where eliminating our emissions altogether would be too complex or expensive to achieve. These emissions will need to be removed from the atmosphere through carbon sinks such as planting more trees and restoring peatlands. We can also potentially look towards new technologies such as carbon capture, usage and storage to act as carbon sinks.


Although carbon sinks have a role to play, it is extremely important to note that it’s simply not sustainable to carry on producing emissions and attempting to offset them through increasing sinks. We must place priority on reducing our emissions in the first place.


Scotland is committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2045 and you can find out more by clicking here.


Image: Woodland near Perth by Keeping Scotland Beautiful.