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Carbon Emissions

Volume 458: debated on Monday 19 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the carbon savings in (a) households, (b) the business sector, (c) central Government and (d) local government in (i) million tonnes of carbon and (ii) million tonnes of carbon dioxide per annum in each year since 2004; and what projections he has made for the years up to 2010. (124641)

Figures published by the Department show that total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions fell by 3.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalents between 2004-05. CO2 emissions fell by 0.4 million tonnes during this period, that is, 0.1 million tonnes Carbon (MtC). Savings by individual end-use sectors are not yet available but DEFRA hopes to publish details later this month.

2005 was the first year of the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS). Under the EU ETS, UK companies are able to buy emissions allowances from other EU countries. Purchase of these allowances is to be taken into account when determining whether the Kyoto target and 2010 domestic goal have been met.

UK installations covered by the scheme emitted 242 million tonnes of CO2 in 2005, which was 27 million tonnes more than their allocations for that year. The electricity supply industry emitted 36.5 million tonnes more than its allocation; other sectors emitted 9.5 million tonnes less. Adjusted for emissions trading, UK CO2 emissions in 2005 were about 527 million tonnes—approximately 11 per cent. lower than 1990 levels.

Projections of emissions, and hence savings, are not provided on a year by year basis, but at five-yearly intervals. Furthermore, projections are made only for the whole of the public sector, not for individual parts. Using the latest published figures (UK climate change programme 2006) for actual 2004 emissions and for projected emissions for 2010 (The Energy Challenge, Annex H—which updated those used in the above climate change programme), projected savings in 2010 relative to 1990 for these sectors are:

Households—22.0 MtCO2 (6.0 MtC)

Business—37.9 MtCO2 (10.35 MtC)

Public sector—7.5 MtCO2 (2.05 MtC)

DEFRA will publish an updated appraisal of the impact of policies and measures included in the 2006 climate change programme later this year. This report will look at the progress of individual policies and measures, and provide a revised projection, if necessary, of the projected saving each policy and measure will deliver in 2010, based on latest available information.