What does Brexit mean for the UK’s Climate Change Act?

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DateAccepted/In press - 24 Jan 2018
DateE-pub ahead of print - 19 Feb 2018
DatePublished (current) - 31 May 2018
Issue number2
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)291-297
Early online date19/02/18
Original languageEnglish


This article examines the potential implications of the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union (so-called ‘Brexit’) for the success and survival of the country’s flagship climate policy, the Climate Change Act 2008. The impact of a ‘soft’ and a ‘hard’ Brexit for the main features of the Climate Change Act are assessed, building on documentary evidence and elite interviews with key policy-makers and policy-shapers. The article argues that the long-term viability of the Climate Change Act was being threatened even before the EU referendum, and that Brexit will do little to improve this situation. Even though the existence of the Climate Change Act is not under immediate threat, a range of issues presented by Brexit risk undermining its successful implementation.

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© The Authors 2018. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details

    Research areas

  • Brexit – EU referendum – Climate Change – Climate Change Act – Emissions Trading Scheme – Energy

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