ENVIRONMENTAL AUDIT COMMITTEE

Wednesday 20 July 2005 NEW EAC TO FOCUS ON CLIMATE CHANGE


Wednesday 20 July 2005 NEW EAC TO FOCUS ON CLIMATE CHANGE

The new Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) today vowed to put climate change at the heart of its work over the new Parliament.  Tasked with monitoring Government and its agencies with regard to environmental protection and sustainability, the Committee will continue to focus on as many areas of government activity, and as many government departments and agencies, as it can. However, the threats posed by climate change will provide an over-arching context for the Committee's work in this Parliament.

Peter Ainsworth, MP, Chairman of the EAC, said:

"Climate change is quite rightly at the top of the international agenda for many governments now, not least our own, and we want to push forward the debate about how to strengthen both policy and action to combat its potentially catastrophic impacts. This, together with the need to recognise that all human activity must respect environmental limits, will form the backdrop to much of EAC's future programme of inquiries.

"We will continue to audit the progress of Government towards greening its operations and policies; and will also, as in the past, assess the environmental content of the Pre-Budget and Budget Reports each year. I am grateful for the growing contribution made by the National Audit Office in relation to these aspects of the Committee's work."

Tomorrow, EAC will announce inquiries into energy, assessing the costs of a possible future nuclear programme as against an expanded programme for renewable energy, and into sustainable procurement, following up one of the last Reports of its predecessor Committee. It also intends to return to the issue of housing in the Autumn, and will establish a sub-committee to look into matters relating to sustainable timber.

Notes for Editors

1. Details of all the Committee's press releases and inquiries, together with its Reports, oral evidence and other publications, are available on the Committee's Internet homepage.