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ONS launches UK climate change portal


Mark Say Managing Editor

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The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has launched a UK climate change statistics portal in advance of the COP26 conference in Glasgow.

It said the portal, which is currently a prototype, provides an accessible one stop shop for statistics on climate change and related topics such as energy use and emissions levels.

Ian Townsend, deputy director for environment, net zero and natural capital at ONS, said it has been developed with partners from across government with aim of informing policy and supporting responses to climate change across public, private and third sectors.

Its home page provides a summary dashboard visualising six statistical indicators – annual mean temperatures, greenhouse gas emissions, fossil fuel energy use, status of surface waters, renewable energy share and new planting of woodlands – each of which can be clicked through for more detail. There are also three explainer articles – on the UK’s changing climate, measuring greenhouse gas emissions and emissions and international trade – to support understanding.

A data explorer makes it possible to search and filter the datasets behind the indicators.

Townsend invited feedback, saying: “Our ambition is for the portal is to evolve to better address the needs of a range of users to inform policy makers and the public even better.

“This might involve broadening the indicators included, providing a more comprehensive picture of climate change, or mini-dashboards and narratives focusing on particular issues. Or maybe aspects of both.”

Image from GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

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