Energy: Fourth Carbon Report — Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:15 pm on 17th May 2011.

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Photo of Lord Marland Lord Marland The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change 5:15 pm, 17th May 2011

The noble Lord's views on climate change are well known. As I said, the energy-intensive industries are fundamental to this country. Obviously, it is incredibly disappointing that, at this particular economic time, they are leaving and moving to China. The whole reason why we will be spending a lot of time looking at it is that we can address some of the fears that the noble Lord puts forward. I would say, though, that we must be very careful about criticising some of the endeavours here. We are accessing, arguably, a £31-trillion market place, which will be good for British business. We already see signs of Siemens starting factories, of GE wanting to start a factory, of new investment coming into the country, which we want to encourage. We also have to realise that this Government-and indeed the previous Government-inherited an electricity market dependent on oil and gas, which was diminishing in supply. No Government had put in place a replacement for it that allowed us to have the energy security that we desperately need to stand alone. Energy security is very high on this Government's priority list. I would hope that the noble Lord would recognise that, and support us in that endeavour.