To achieve net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions requires a transition from fossil fuel use to renewables, and eliminating GHG emissions from agriculture, construction and waste. Five sensitive intervention points (SIPs) could help change human behavior, building on the renewable energy revolution: (1) installing sufficient non-GHG electricity (removing coal); (2) replacing internal-combustion vehicles by electric (EVs), connecting parked EVs to an intelligent grid for short-run electricity storage (removing oil); (3) utilizing intermittent ‘surplus’ electricity for hydrogen production and liquefying it for medium-term storage and a high-heat source for industry; (4) changing domestic heating to heat pumps and solar photovoltaics (removing natural gas); (5) harnessing electricity in agriculture (vertical & underground ‘farms’) and waste. Behavior change requires viable substitute technologies and infrastructures, and timing stages in tandem, but also incentives to overcome perceived and real adjustment costs. Employment, real per-capita incomes, living styles and standards can be maintained while decarbonizing the economy by implementing these SIPs, illustrated for the UK.


Castle, J. L., & Hendry, D.F. (2024) 'Five sensitive intervention points to achieve climate neutrality by 2050, illustrated by the UK', Renewable Energy, 226, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.renene.2024.120445.
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