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Sustainable Development

Volume 497: debated on Tuesday 13 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what steps his Department is taking to implement the recommendations of the Sustainable Development Commission's report Prosperity without growth? The transition to a sustainable economy, which fall within its responsibility. (289794)

The Sustainable Development Commission's report contains one recommendation on which DECC leads: “Imposing Clearly Defined Resource/emission Caps”. The Climate Change Act commits the Government to reductions in emissions of at least 80 per cent. by 2050, and creates a system of five-year carbon budgets to ensure this target is delivered. The level of the first three carbon budgets (2008-22) was set through secondary legislation in May 2009. The UK Low Carbon Transition Plan, published in July 2009, sets out how the first three carbon budgets will be delivered. Delivery of the carbon budgets is enabled by policies including trading schemes which set specific caps, in particular the European Emissions Trading System which covers about half of UK emissions, and the forthcoming Carbon Reduction Commitment.