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Departmental Carbon Emissions

Volume 504: debated on Thursday 28 January 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport whether (a) his Department, (b) its agencies and (c) associated non-departmental public bodies plan to sign up to the 10:10 campaign for cutting carbon usage in 2010; and if he will publish the (i) criteria and (ii) research upon which such a decision will be taken. (313433)

The Department for Transport is committed to delivering its share of the challenging targets which the Government have set for long term reductions in carbon usage on the Government Estate, but does not intend to sign up to the 10:10 campaign which is focussed on reductions this year.

The Department is involved in a number of initiatives and has several activities underway targeted at reducing carbon emissions.

Those activities include:

Carbon Reduction Commitment—due to start in April 2010;

The Carbon Trust Standard—attainment in the next financial year.

Carbon Budgets—the Department has worked closely with DECC, DEFRA and OGC to set the scope of transport emissions;

Sustainable Operations on the Government Estate (SOGE) Framework—the Department continues to work with OGC, and DEFRA, looking to extend the SOGE travel targets to include commuter travel and freight supply emissions;

Low Carbon Vehicles—the Department is supporting the trial of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles and the Government Car and Despatch Agency will trial a plug-in hybrid later this year;

Biomass and Combined Heat & Power Plant—these technologies are being considered as part of boiler replacement programmes in the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency;

Motorway Lighting—the Highways Agency is running a number of pilots where motorway lighting is switched off during certain off-peak, low usage periods.