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Can a city come together in support of a net zero future? Oh Yes!

A year on from the launch of Hull’s innovative net zero initiative, over 150 businesses and organisations in the city are collaborating to take action on decarbonisation.

16 May 20233 minute read
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Can a city come together in support of a net zero future? Oh Yes!

Countries and cities around the world are working to reduce their carbon emissions to net zero.

The UK has pledged to be net zero by 2050. At Reckitt, our ambition is to be net zero by 2040.

As part of that ambition – and our wider commitment to creating a cleaner, healthier world – we joined forces in March 2022 with partners from the public and private sector in the UK city of Hull to launch an innovative net zero initiative.

Oh Yes! Net Zero is a movement of Hull and Humber-based businesses and organisations that have pledged to take action together to cut their carbon emissions.

Its objective is for Hull to lead the way in demonstrating how a city can become net zero by fostering collaboration and providing practical support in the creation and delivery of net zero plans.

The inaugural report published today marks a year since the launch of Oh Yes! Net Zero. Oh Yes! Net Zero has attracted over 150 members – representing more than 46,500 employees – and has the support of political stakeholders at all levels and from all major parties.

The report, ‘Delivering Net Zero for Hull’, outlines the lessons learned by the movement during its first year, brings to life the carbon reduction activities of members and highlights the need for clarity on the government’s Net Zero priorities and policies at a national and local level.

Cities account for 70 per cent of global emissions and Hull, at the heart of the most carbon intensive industrial cluster in the UK, is critical to the country’s net zero ambitions.

Alongside Oh Yes! Net Zero’s other founding partners, Hull City Council, University of Hull and Future Humber, we believe the initiative’s innovative ‘Living Lab’ approach can be replicated other cities around the world.

The findings in the campaign’s report chime with those of the government’s Net Zero Review, published earlier this year, which recommends pursuing place-based initiatives as a vital element of the UK’s approach to creating a net zero economy and seizing the opportunities it presents.

The review calls for reforms to the planning system to put net zero at its heart nationally and locally, incentives for business investment in decarbonisation and a campaign to offer information and advice to help small businesses cut their emissions.

Find out more about Oh Yes! Net Zero and read the ‘Delivering Net Zero for Hull’ below. 

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"What happens in our cities really matters as they account for 70% of global emissions: we all want healthier cities and healthier lives on the path to Net Zero. There is so much work being delivered on green energy in our former industrial heartlands: Net Zero will not only clean up the environment but create millions of new green jobs around the world and add to economic prosperity. I wish the campaign success at it moves into its second year and continues to be an example of how place-based approaches can help deliver Net Zero progress."

Rt Hon Sir Alok Sharma

MP COP26 President