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Departments: Carbon Emissions

Volume 461: debated on Monday 18 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what methodology is used by his Department to account for its carbon emissions. (140788)

To account for its carbon emissions the Home Office measures the consumption of electricity, gas and fuel oil across the estate and converts these figures into carbon equivalents with the assistance of the Building Research Establishment. Carbon emissions from road travel undertaken by Home Office staff are accounted for in accordance with DEFRA’s guidance to business on environmental reporting. We measure the amount of travel by hire cars, pool cars, private vehicles and taxis and take account of vehicle fuel type in calculating emissions. These figures are submitted for inclusion in the Sustainable Development in Government report published annually by the Sustainable Development Commission.

Separately the Department participates in the Government’s carbon offsetting scheme, which calculates the carbon dioxide emissions created by official air travel. Central data are provided to DEFRA who then adjust these to take into account the total impact that aviation imposes on climate change and purchase credits from projects which prevent or remove an equivalent amount of emissions from the atmosphere.