Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee

Draft Climate Change Bill

Draft Climate Change Bill

Report published

The Committee published ' Draft Climate Change Bill', its Fifth Report 2006-07 (HC 534-I), on 4 July 2007.

Oral and Written Evidence (HC 546-II) was published on 5 July 2007.

The Government Response (Cm 7225) was published on Monday 29 October 2007 (pages 65-76).

Pre-legislative scrutiny of Draft Climate Change Bill

The Committee has decided to examine the Government's Draft Climate Change Bill, which was published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on 13 March 2007.

Information about the Draft Bill can be found at: http://www.defra.gov.uk/news/latest/2007/climate-0313.htm

Terms of Reference

1. The validity of the Government's domestic targets to
- reduce CO2 emissions by 60% below 1990 baseline levels by 2050, and
- reduce CO2 emissions by 26-32% below 1990 baseline levels by 2020.
2. Why the carbon budget for the period including the year 2020 cannot exceed 32%.
3. The rationale for a five-year budgetary period.
4. Monitoring and early warning systems to ensure achievement of targets is on track.
5. Accountability and enforcement mechanisms to ensure compliance with targets, and sanctions in cases of non-compliance.

Carbon budgeting
6. The facility€”in any given budgetary period€”to 'borrow' emissions rights from a subsequent period, or to 'bank' any 'surplus' emissions reductions for use in the next budgetary period.
7. The facility to purchase carbon credits from outside the UK to meet domestic targets, in terms of their overall quantity and sources.
8. The range and validity of changes in circumstances in which budgets can be subject to review and revision.
9. The reporting procedure and Parliamentary accountability.

10. Whether adequate provision is made within the Bill to address adaptation to climate change.

Committee on Climate Change
11. Its composition and appointment, including length of tenure and degree of independence.
12. Its function and responsibilities.
13. Its powers in determining carbon budgets and the provisions within each budget.
14. The adequacy of its range of functions in overseeing the targets.
15. The resources available to the Committee.

Enabling powers
16. The adequacy and implications of the proposed enabling powers allowing the Secretary of State to establish greenhouse gas emission trading schemes by means of secondary legislation.

International implications
17. The validity of the Government's view that the Bill will act as an effective example to drive international climate change policy post-2012.

18. Whether there are other domestic climate change issues which it would be appropriate to include in the Bill.

The deadline for written evidence was Tuesday 8 May 2007.

Oral evidence sessions

23 May 2007
Office of Climate Change; Rt Hon David Miliband MP, Secretary of State, Defra

21 May 2007
William Wilson, Director, Cambrensis Ltd and Barrister, Environmental Law Unit, Burges Salmon LLP, Michael Woods, Partner, Stephenson Harwood (Council Member of the UK Environmental Law Association and Co-convenor of UKELA's Climate Change Working Party), and Tom Bainbridge, Partner, Nabarro (Co-convenor of UKELA's Climate Change Working Party); Fuel Poverty Advisory Group

16 May 2007
Climate Change Capital and the Carbon Trust; CBI and EEF, the Manufacturers' Organisation

14 May 2007
Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research and the Energy Saving Trust; Friends of the Earth and RSPB

Press notices

29/10/07 Government Response published
04/07/07 Report published
28/06/07 Report to be published
17/05/07 Further evidence sessions announced
14/05/07 Further evidence session announced
10/05/07 Evidence session announced
19/04/07 Terms of Reference announced
15/03/07 New inquiry

Related Inquiries

Climate change: the role of bioenergy (Report and response published - 18 September & 13 December 2006 )

Climate change: the "citizen's agenda" (Report published 13 September 2007)

Climate change: international climate policy post-2012 (Inquiry announced)