Opposition Day — [10th Allotted Day]
Ian Pearson (Minister of State (Climate Change and the Environment), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Dudley South, Labour)
As I have explained to the hon. Gentleman before, the DEFRA office estate is going through a transition phase—moving from some buildings to others—and all the buildings are covered in our carbon footprint. As I said at the outset, our performance across the Government estate has not been as good as I would like it to be and we need to make real improvements, which is why we are giving it increasing attention at ministerial and senior official level.
Sustainability in homes and buildings is not just about construction but about how we heat and power them. We want more heat and power generated locally through renewable and low-carbon processes such as microgeneration and combined heat and power. The new planning policy statement on climate change will require a significant proportion of energy supply for substantial new development to be gained renewably or from a decentralised, renewable or low-carbon, energy supply.
That is real progress, but it is by no means the last word. We need to do more and we are committed to do so. As a Government, we shall continue to give a lead in tackling climate change both at home and internationally. The UK is the first country in the world to propose a strong legal framework for tackling climate change to meet our goal of becoming a low-carbon economy. As I said, the Climate Change Bill will put into statute our targets for reducing CO2 emissions by at least 60 per cent. by 2050 and by 26 to 32 per cent. by 2020. We are talking about CO2 equivalent figures, too, which take into account the greenhouse impact of other gases.