COMMONS

Publication of Pre-appointment Hearing Report

11 September 2012

The Energy and Climate Change Committee published its report on the Pre-Appointment Hearing with the Government’s Preferred Candidate for Chair of the Committee on Climate Change (HC 555) at 00.01 am on Tuesday 11 September 2012.

The Committee agreed its Report on Tuesday 4 September, following hearing oral evidence in public from Lord Deben (a full transcript is published alongside the report at www.parliament.uk/eccpublications).

Since then, additional information about Lord Deben’s interests was drawn to the Committee’s attention. This has been published by its author at the following link, and is noted here in the interests of transparency:
http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2012/9/4/debens-closet-water-interests.html

The additional information was passed on to Lord Deben, who has provided the following comment:

“The core business of Veolia Water UK is as a supplier of services to the water industry. Even now, after the disposal of the company's statutory water interests, this work accounts for more than 90% of Veolia's turnover. Any contracting in gas or electricity is subsidiary and energy source neutral. Renewable or non-renewable, Veolia Water UK has no position. They merely make the connection.


"Water metering installation, to which I referred in our hearing,  accounts for less than 5% of the business. The company competes for contracts in a consortium with other construction partners to provide these services to customers. Veolia Water does not make the decision to replace, renew, read, or install. That decision is taken by the Water Company concerned and is driven by a whole range of considerations and pressures, not least the growing inappropriateness of rateable value. It is difficult to see how a conflict of interest might arise but were it to, I would obviously stand aside from any involvement.”

The information has also been passed to the Permanent Secretary of the Department of Energy and Climate Change. The Committee does not propose to re-open its consideration of Lord Deben’s suitability for this position.

The report is available at www.parliament.uk/eccpublications. Further copies may be obtained from the Stationery Office (0845 702 3474) or from the Parliamentary Bookshop (020 7219 3890).

Image: iStockPhoto

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