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UN: Vehicles

Volume 689: debated on Wednesday 31 January 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will propose to the United Nations a study of the potential savings of both annual carbon emissions and cost which could be achieved if the United Nations and its agencies purchase vehicles costing less than a specified sum and with a specified minimum fuel performance. [HL1539]

The UK seeks to encourage best practice with international organisations in integrating sustainable development in their procurement policies, including in the UN. The UN takes into account fuel efficiency, emission standards, noise level and use of recycled materials in procurement of its transport fleet but needs to balance this with other factors such as cost and requirement for specialised terrain vehicles.

The Government's aim is to lead by example. We are committed to transforming and delivering a step-change improvement in the way that we manage our business sustainably. Sustainable operations are wholly consistent with good value for money and efficiency and are part of building a modern and resource efficient public sector. In the 2005 sustainable development strategy, the Government stated their ambitious goal to be among the leaders in the EU on sustainable procurement by 2009. My right honourable friend the Prime Minister launched new targets in June 2006 for sustainable operations on the government estate. These include reducing carbon emissions from road vehicles used for government administrative operations by 15 per cent by 2010-11, relative to 2005-06 levels.