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Climate Change

Volume 474: debated on Monday 31 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what research he has evaluated to develop his policy on anthropogenic climate change; (196405)

(2) what assessment he has made of the reliability of the scientific evidence on which each of the four Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports has been based; and if he will make a statement;

(3) what assessment he has made of the reliability of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports in developing his policies on climate change.

The scientific basis for understanding anthropogenic climate change is extremely strong. DEFRA evaluates the evidence provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its comprehensive reports, as well as through DEFRA and Ministry of Defence funded climate research undertaken by the UK's world-leading Met Office in Hadley Centre, in Exeter; and through ongoing contact with other climate researchers in the UK and elsewhere.

Four assessment reports have been completed in 1990, 1995, 2001 and the latest in 2007. The UK fully supports the work of the IPCC and regards its assessments as providing the most authoritative view of climate change. The IPCC assessments have fully informed the development of domestic climate policy and the UK position in international climate negotiations.

Hundreds of UK scientists were involved in the preparation of the fourth assessment report and DEFRA supports lead authors and review editors to participate in IPCC writing groups.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what representations he has received on the Manhattan Declaration on Climate Change; and if he will make a statement. (196406)