The Committee on Climate Change is shortly due to provide advice to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on whether the exploitation of onshore petroleum resources (including shale gas) is compatible with meeting UK carbon budgets. This duty was created for the Committee under the Infrastructure Act 2015.
The Infrastructure Act 2015 (section 49) states that the Committee’s advice must be provided to the Secretary of State by 1 April 2016, and laid before Parliament alongside an official response from the Department of Energy and Climate Change ‘as soon as is practicable’ after 1 April 2016.
The Committee expects its advice to be published in May. This is due to the Easter recess – which sees the House of Commons rise from 24 March to 11 April – and a period of Purdah ahead of UK local elections on 5 May which limits official Government (i.e. DECC) communications activity.
Further update, 11 May 2016
In keeping with the Infrastructure Act 2015, Compatibility of Onshore Petroleum with meeting UK carbon budgets was delivered by the Committee on Climate Change to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on 30 March 2016.
The Act states that the Secretary of State must lay the Committee’s report before Parliament alongside the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s official response ‘as soon as is practicable’ after 1 April 2016.