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Climate Change

Volume 469: debated on Monday 10 December 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when the Climate Change planning Policy Statement will be published. (165210)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Bexhill and Battle (Gregory Barker) on 24 October 2007, Official Report, column 376W.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps her Department (a) has taken and (b) intends to take by (i) 2012 and (ii) 2020 in relation to adaptation to the effects of climate change as they affect her departmental responsibilities; and if she will make a statement. (166421)

[holding answer 6 December 2007]: My Department has taken a number of steps to build adaptation to the effects of climate change into its policies. These include:

Water scarcity—announcing regulations to be introduced on the water efficiency of new homes;

Flood risk—publishing Planning Policy Statement 25: Development and Flood Risk, and publishing guidance on resilient construction. PPS25 is an important part of climate change adaptation policy, providing a risk-based approach to managing future changes in flood risk to new development due to climate change;

Overheating—Limiting temperature rise by controlling the effects of solar gain through passive measures is one of the five main criteria that have to be met to comply with the energy efficiency requirements of the Building Regulations for new homes. To help limit the reliance for air conditioning due to hotter summers new homes will need to be designed with both hot and cold weather in mind if they are to be zero carbon;

Planning—publishing a draft Planning Policy Statement: Planning and Climate Change, which is due to be finalised shortly, and including a duty on planning authorities in relation to climate change in the Planning Reform Bill;

Local Government—consulting on an indicator on climate change adaptation, to be included in the new Local Government Performance Framework;

Emergency response—publishing guidance to the Fire and Rescue Service on responding to the effects of climate change;

Existing buildings—work with the London Climate Change Partnership and the three regions (London, South East, East of England) exploring what needs to happen to homes for purposes of adaptation and resilience.

The Department will be working with Whitehall on the development of a cross-Government Adaptation Framework, due for publication in the spring.

The Climate Change Bill, once enacted, will require Government to report at least every five years on current and predicted impacts of climate change and on its proposals and policy for adapting to these. The Department will consider and address the risks that climate change presents to its policies and programmes as part of that process.