Energy Bill [HL] - Commons Amendments

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 8:00 pm on 12th April 2016.

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Photo of Lord Howell of Guildford Lord Howell of Guildford Conservative 8:00 pm, 12th April 2016

The question is: why are we not using the flexibility in the Climate Change Act to amend it, to ease some of the obvious and immediate pressures that are making the problems of the steel industry—but not only the steel industry—so very difficult because we are too far out of line? Anxious as we are to create a good example, which I fully accept, we are too far out of line with our direct competitors. People are being hurt and jobs are being lost. Why are we not amending our own Climate Change Act now, as we are allowed to do, to meet the new conditions? Is this to be part of the strategy, which we clearly need and which we talked about earlier today, to recover our own commercial and viable steel industries? My simple question to the noble Lord, Lord Grantchester—it is a bit to my noble friend Lord Bourne and the Government, too—is: why are we not following the precepts and guidance of the Climate Change Act itself and meeting the obvious needs of industry at this moment in some towns and areas, where many people are being thrown out of work?