The world's first Climate Change Act was passed into law in UK on 26 November, 2008.
It imposes a legal requirement on successive governments to ensure carbon emissions are cut by at least 80 per cent on 1990 levels by 2050 and aims to provide the UK with the overarching legal framework necessary to become a low-carbon economy.
Under the act, Ministers are required to set five year carbon targets and introduce measures to ensure they are met.
An independent Committee on Climate Change was also created to ensure the targets are met and provide government with advice on targets and related policies.
Ministers have to report on their progress against the carbon budgets each year. Failure to meet any five year budget will require the government to explain why it has missed the target and could leave it open to a judicial review.
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