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International Climate Change Agreement

Volume 555: debated on Thursday 13 December 2012

6. If he will make it his policy to seek bilateral agreements in advance of a new international climate change agreement. (133323)

The best strategy to avoid dangerous climate change must be agreeing a new global deal in 2015. However, while pressing for this, we are also working hard with other countries to encourage low carbon growth through effective bilateral partnerships. I pay tribute to my hon. Friend and to GLOBE International for the important work that they are doing in this area too.

Following the outcomes at Doha, it is clear that we need to reconsider how we use our political capital to get a successful deal in 2015. Does the Minister agree with GLOBE’s analysis that much greater focus should be given to supporting action at national level to put in place climate legislation and regulation in order to create the political conditions for that agreement?

My hon. Friend is right. If we are to see progress that allows us to clinch that global deal in 2015, we need much more momentum and we need to build momentum at national level as well. The UK has led by example but we are also now engaged with countries such as South Korea, China and Mexico, and other countries with which GLOBE is familiar, to see how we can work together in partnership to drive real progress on the ground, as well as with the private sector.

May I press the Minister on that? How much of the UK funds delivered through the international climate fund will benefit businesses in Britain’s low carbon sector?

I am delighted to say that making sure that our international climate fund benefits the UK low carbon sector is a key aim of our policy. That is why I took a trade mission—the largest ever green trade mission—to east Africa in October, and I will be going in the new year to the middle east, taking more of our renewables companies, to make sure that where we are supporting developing countries, UK industry gets the benefit of that, and in the long term, probably more than the total spend.