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Local Government: Carbon Emissions

Volume 508: debated on Monday 29 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of the effect on the (a) council tax rates and (b) finances of local authorities if they do not reduce carbon dioxide levels significantly below their baseline of the Carbon Reduction Commitment. (323087)

I have been asked to reply.

Government have assessed the potential burden of the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme on local authorities, and has determined that it will not constitute a new burden for the sector. Its overall impact is not therefore expected to increase council tax, but will result in net savings for local authorities.

Analysis indicates that the potential savings from reduced energy bills are far higher than the costs incurred. The financial impact of the CRC will be determined by the organisation’s relative performance as compared to other participants. The maximum penalty will be an extremely small fraction of local authorities operating costs, and this would be offset by even very modest improvements in energy efficiency.