Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Targets

Part of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – in the House of Commons on 11th June 2019.

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Photo of Chris Skidmore Chris Skidmore Vice-Chair, Conservative Party, Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Universities and Science) (Joint with the Department for Education)

It is important to put on record the content of the Government’s letter to the Committee on Climate Change. After careful consideration of the committee’s advice, the Government decided to hold in reserve a small proportion of over performance from carbon budget 2—88 megatonnes of a total over performance of 384 megatonnes. The reserve will act solely as a contingency. [Interruption.] I have 384 mega- tonnes, but I will happily correct the record when I look at the statistics. Eighty-eight megatonnes are being held in reserve and act solely as a contingency against changes in the baseline. This will be released once it is clear that it will not be needed to address any technical changes to the baseline. We have also asked the Committee on Climate Change to look at those technical changes. We would not have asked the committee to take forward work on net zero if we did not believe we will be able to implement this.

When it comes to the cost reduction, I entirely agree with the hon. Gentleman that costs have come down on technology and will continue to come down. The Committee on Climate Change has made it clear that it can be done within the envelope of 1% to 2% of GDP, as set out for the 80% reduction.