Industrial Carbon Emissions (Targets) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:49 am on 3rd July 2009.

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Photo of Charles Kennedy Charles Kennedy Liberal Democrat, Ross, Skye and Lochaber 11:49 am, 3rd July 2009

I thank my hon. Friend for that contribution; he has hit the nail on the head. The Bill aims to encourage much more specific definitions in these areas.

The EU has set emission limits for other pollutants—sulphur dioxide, for example—so the concept behind the Bill is already well established. Perhaps the most well known example of an emissions performance standard for CO2 is the one applied to power plants in the state of California—and, indeed, it is being extended to other states in the US. It was implemented in California in 2007 and it requires that any new power station—or, for that matter, any energy imported into the state—meets carbon intensity limits. These are set so that new unabated coal plants without CCS cannot go ahead. If CCS is added to a new plant, however, it complies with the standard and it can proceed—precisely the point that my hon. Friend David Howarth made.

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John Byng
Posted on 6 Jul 2009 2:58 pm (Report this annotation)

I am worried that Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) may not work or may be yet another way of passing the burden to future generations.

The technology is not yet developed yet the prospect of CCS is being used to justify new coal burning power stations and business as usual rather than frugality.

Even if the technology works, I understand the CO2 will be injected into holes in the ground where it will present a risk of leakage (gradual or catastrohic). I need reassurance that this storage will be safe and permanent because it is not fair to construct problems for future generations - particularly because we have the alternative of being more frugal.