I am very conscious, gentlefolk, of the common aspirations of the Committee in so far as climate change is concerned. With that in mind, I have a serious announcement to make. I have good news and bad news. The good news is that this is the last occasion on which members of the Committee will have to suffer somewhat bilious interpretations of “Erskine May” and the pedantic application of Standing Orders by me. As of today, hon. Members will be left to the tender mercies of Mr. Peter Atkinson for the remainder of our proceedings. The bad aspect is the fact that in my experience in the position of Chairman, which is considerable, members of the Committee will not do justice to the proposals within the time set under the programme motion unless there is a major adjustment in presentation techniques. I offer that advice in the spirit of kindness and in the hope of helping to sort out our climatic problems.
I also want to point out that this is a maiden occasion for Minister Ruddock, so I ask members of the Committee to be gentle.