Josh is a Senior Policy Fellow, at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment where he leads the policy analysis team on UK climate & energy policy.
Josh has recently worked with the OECD on modelling the distributional impacts of climate policy on UK households. Josh has also been a consultant to the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC), Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the Taiwanese Environmental Protection Administration and the Welsh Parliament under the Research Service Brexit Academic Framework Agreement.
Josh is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Prior to joining the Grantham Institute, Josh was a Senior Research Fellow at Policy Exchange where he led the Energy and Environment department. He was responsible for designing, leading and delivering existing and new research projects focused on energy and environmental policies which respond to the most important questions the UK faces, as well as writing articles, organising events, and talking to policymakers, experts and opinion formers from government, academia, NGOs, Parliament and business.
Before this he worked as a Project Manager in an AiM listed renewable energy project developer focussing on distributed generation. His professional experience also includes work in the public policy sphere at both Chatham House and The Overseas Development Institute. He has a BSc in Geography from the University of Nottingham, and an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College London.
Research and policy interests
- Understanding the barriers to the UK’S low-carbon energy transition
- Design of economy-wide economic policy framework for decarbonisation.
- The role of gas in a decarbonised world
- Ensuring the political sustainability of climate policy
Policy - 2021
The UK's net-zero commitment assumes the use of greenhouse gas removal (GGR) technologies, but there is little understanding of how they might be funded and who will bear the cost. This study prepared for the National Infrastructure Commission analyses how the distribution of costs for funding these technologies impacts society across income deciles. Read more
This submission was made by the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment and the ESRC Centre for... Read more
There has been a resurgence in the debate around Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanisms (CBAMs) and the role they may play in preserving the effectiveness of climate action in high ambition countries. This report explores how the European Union’s CBAM, announced to come into force by the end of 2022, might affect the UK. Read more
Policy - 2020
This report argues that carbon pricing alongside complementary policies can help Taiwan reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in a fair and cost-effective way. It assesses the options and identifies a clear path to carbon pricing in Taiwan. Read more
To tackle the challenges of climate change, more investment needs to be mobilised in low-carbon technologies and capital assets. This report examines the implications for firms as they diversify into the green marketplace. Read more
This brief argues that once the immediate rescue has been secured and countries move towards recovery from COVID-19, carefully implementing carbon pricing while reducing fossil fuel subsidies should be at the core of any stimulus package. Read more
This study explores the distributional impacts of a net-zero-consistent carbon price across different household types and income deciles in the UK; and examines which combination of interventions may reduce carbon consumption and still be progressive. The authors find that it is possible to design a revenue recycling scheme that leaves fuel-poor and low-income households better off while driving the transition to net-zero emissions in the UK by 2050. Read more
Policy - 2019
This submission was made to the Environment Agency's consultation on its draft strategy for flood and coastal risk management in England, and draws on the Grantham Research Institute's work and expertise over many years in this area. Read more
The Grantham Research Institute’s response to the Commons Select Committee inquiry into decarbonisation of the UK economy highlights the Treasury’s unique position in government to drive the transition towards net-zero greenhouse gas emissions while maintaining a focus on economic growth. Read more
This policy brief analyses global trends in carbon taxation and differences in tax design around the world to draw out lessons for the design of a possible new carbon tax for the UK, as the country plans how to meet its ambitious new net-zero emissions target and how it prices carbon after Brexit. Read more
This written evidence was submitted on 12 July 2019 to the joint consultation into ‘The future of carbon pricing’, being carried out by the UK, Scottish and Welsh Governments, and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs in Northern Ireland. Read more
This report explains the importance of pricing carbon as a key component of any strategy to reach net-zero emissions in the UK, setting out how the price may differ sector to sector and how to incentivise negative emissions. Read more
News - 2021
This news article considers different options for carbon taxing in the UK. Includes a quote from Josh Burke who outlines... Read more
People are most likely to support climate policies that they consider to be fair. With the recent rise in alarmist rhetoric around the ‘cost’ of net-zero and the need to ensure a just low-carbon transition, Josh Burke explores the case for recycling the proceeds of a carbon tax back to households. Read more
In this news article Josh Burke responds to reports that the UK Government is considering offsetting the cost of higher... Read more
Carbon pricing should be part of nothing less than a significant and broad package of post-COVID fiscal reforms, say Esin Serin and Josh Burke, as they outline what these reforms should look like. Read more
News - 2020
News report concerning the launch of a report, titled Carbon pricing options for Taiwan that was published by the Grantham... Read more
Policy Fellow, Josh Burke, discusses research finding that half of the UK's true carbon footprint is created abroad. In his response he says that policies such as border carbon adjustments (carbon taxes on imports) could provide an elegant economic solution. Read more
The impact of COVID-19 on the price of carbon illustrates just how important it is to build flexibility into cap-and-trade systems and this is something policymakers should remember for the design of the UK’s post-Brexit emissions trading system, argue Josh Burke and Luca Taschini. Read more
Josh Burke examines the costs, opportunities, advantages and disadvantages of different carbon capture and negative emissions technologies. Read more
Josh Burke discusses (in this article for EU Observer) what Brexit will mean for UK climate policy and considers options for carbon pricing if it withdraws from the EU ETS. Read more
News - 2019
In this article looking at the decline of coal use in the UK Josh Burke says a confluence of market drivers & regulatory interventions (in particular the introduction of a carbon price support scheme in 2013) have steered the UK away from coal. Read more
Reports that the British Government will reveal plans to cut fuel duty in this week’s pre-Budget announcement are dismaying just four months after it committed to reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, says Josh Burke, especially when there is consensus on how to cut emissions from the transport sector. Read more
This article reflects on comments made by the government’s chief environment scientist on the UK's net zero target. In the article Josh Burke refers to research by the Grantham Research Institute which shows how achieving net zero and maintaining economic growth are not mutually exclusive. Read more
Josh Burke and Rebecca Byrnes discuss new research into global approaches to carbon pricing. Read more
Josh Burke argues that using the metaphor of war could be detrimental to communicating the climate message – but may help encourage the investment in innovation and structural changes we need. Read more
Carbon pricing could form the policy bedrock for a net-zero target, argues Josh Burke Inaction on climate change puts the... Read more
What does ‘net-zero’ emissions mean and what are the challenges – from technological to moral – to achieving it, in the UK and worldwide? Read more
The UK’s coal phase-out may be proceeding apace but there remains a gap where ‘just transition’ plans should sit – for coal and for other fossil fuel industry – argues Josh Burke. Read more
News - 2018
To tax or to trade – that is the question. Following the October Budget, and as Brexit looms, Josh Burke assesses the policy landscape around carbon pricing in the UK. Read more