UK’s latest climate plan lacks vision and urgency, says CCC

Published 13th March 2024

Independent Assessment of the Third National Adaptation Programme – Climate Change Committee (

Key Findings are:

  • NAP3 falls far short of what is needed. NAP3 lacks the pace and ambition to address growing climate risks, which we are already experiencing in the UK. It fails to set out a compelling vision for what the government’s ‘well adapted UK’ entails, and only around 40% of the short-term actions to address urgent risks identified in the last Climate Change Risk Assessment are progressed. The lack of a measurable vision will prevent effective delivery of adaptation by public agencies, local authorities, and the private sector, as well as inhibiting a clear assessment of progress.
  • Slow progress across three NAPs shows that the current approach is not working, and that change is needed. NAP3 is an improvement on its predecessorIt is the most developed and comprehensive of the three NAPs that have been published under the Climate Change Act (2008). It goes beyond the previous programmes in several key aspects. However, the programme still falls far short of what is needed. Issues of governance, investment and monitoring are currently fundamentally limiting the ability for an adequate response to climate risks in the UK.
  • An urgent refresh of NAP3 and adaptation governance should be undertaken in the new Parliament. NAP3 must be strengthened to avoid locking in additional climate impacts and key reforms must be implemented over the next years to support improved delivery of adaptation. NAP3 contains a commitment to an evolving programme over its lifetime. Delivering this commitment is essential. Government adaptation policy must be reorganised so that it becomes a fundamental aspect of policy making across all departments, links with government spending reviews, and is integrated into other key priorities such as nature restoration, infrastructure development, Net Zero, and health.
  • The UK has lost its place as a leader in climate adaptation. The UK should look to international examples of good practice as valuable templates of what should be achieved as part of the refresh of the NAP.
  • We cannot asses progress without monitoring and evaluation. The monitoring and evaluation system pledged in NAP3 needs to be delivered urgently.