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Energy and Climate Change White Paper – 15 July 2009

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) today welcomed the Government’s Energy and Climate Change White Paper which is aimed at kick-starting the shift towards a low-carbon economy. The White Paper, launched today by Secretary of State Ed Miliband, outlines measures to support increased investment in renewable electricity and cleaner transport which will, if successfully implemented, mark real progress towards meeting the CCC’s Interim Carbon Budget of a 34% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. The White Paper is a response to the CCC’s advice to Government on the level of the 2050 target and Carbon Budgets in its report Building a low-carbon economy – the UK’s contribution to tackling climate change, which was published in December 2008. So far, the Government has accepted all recommendations made by the CCC.

Chair of the CCC, Lord Adair Turner said:

“This sends a clear signal that the future of Britain’s economy is a low-carbon one, and a clear message to world leaders that Britain is serious about negotiating an ambitious settlement at Copenhagen. It is vital that we achieve both this global commitment and support here at home for deep emissions cuts required to reduce risks of dangerous climate change.

“We welcome the Government’s White Paper, which is a useful step towards a detailed plan for meeting carbon budgets. It provides a good foundation for achieving dramatic emissions cuts to be made in the power sector, in buildings, transport and industry over the next five, ten and fifteen years.

We will complement the White Paper with our report to Parliament in October, where we will set out what in our view are the specific measures required to meet carbon budgets”

Embargoed until: 12.00 on 15 July 2009
Issue No: 011The CCC’s report to Parliament, to be published on 12 October 2009, will also assess the impact of the economic recession for meeting carbon budgets, and will discuss the appropriate balance between Government action and market mechanisms for delivering emissions cuts in the power sector, buildings, and through low carbon transport.

The White Paper also starts to consider how the UK should adapt to the impacts of climate change. In June, members were pointed to a new Adaptation Sub-Committee which will sit within the CCC and advise the Government on adaptation. The Chair of this Committee is Lord John Krebs. The ASC will publish its work plan in October 2009.

The CCC will also publish a comprehensive review of UK aviation on 8 December 2009 at the request of the Secretary of State for Transport. This will consider future aviation emissions based on an assessment of key drivers including demand, scope for improving fuel efficiency of planes, and use of sustainable biofuels. The report will also draw out implications for infrastructure investment given the UK’s target that aviation emissions should return to 2005 levels in 2050.

Notes to editors:
Committee on Climate Change (CCC)

The CCC is an independent body established under the Climate Change Act to advise the Government on setting the first legally binding carbon budgets, and to report to Parliament on the progress made in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The CCC also advises on what the UK’s long-term climate change target should be as a fair contribution towards a global deal. www.theccc.org.uk/

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