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Departmental Carbon Emissions

Volume 475: debated on Friday 9 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much his Department spent on carbon offsetting in each of the last three years; and to which companies payments for carbon offsetting have been made in each such year. (204098)

The Northern Ireland Office, along with the majority of central Government Departments, is a member of the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund (GCOF). The GCOF aims to fulfil the Government’s commitment to offset emissions attributable to all official and ministerial air travel in central Government. It is available to all central Government Departments and provides a simple and cost effective way to offset, as well as ensuring high environmental integrity. The GCOF runs for an initial period of three years (2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09).

The GCOF is being managed by EEA Fund Management Ltd, which won the contract to source and deliver 255,000 Certified Emission Reduction Credits, with a provision for a further 50,000 credits, over three years from a range of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects. Credits will be supplied from the project portfolio of Trading Emissions plc, to which EEA is the investment adviser.

My Department paid £11,384.56 into the GCOF for 2006-07, to offset some l,148 tCO2e from air travel. Data is currently being collected for the 2007-08 reporting year and will be available later in the year.