Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee

Session 2006-07

19 April 2007

Pre-legislative scrutiny of the Draft Climate Change Bill

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 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.

The Committee will consider in particular:


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 Committee invites all interested parties to address these matters in writing by Tuesday 8 May 2007.

More information about the required format of submissions is given below.


Submissions should be in Word or rich text format and sent by e-mail to climate@parliament.uk. The body of the e-mail must include a contact name, telephone number and postal address. The e-mail should also make clear who the submission is from.

Please mark the submission for the attention of the EFRA Committee inquiry.

Submissions must address the terms of reference. They should be as brief as possible, and no more than 3,000 words. Paragraphs should be numbered for ease of reference, and the document must include an executive summary (no more than one page long). Please do not resubmit your response to the Government's consultation of March 2007€”if you wish to enclose your response to the Government's consultation, please do so only as an appendix to your submission to this inquiry.

Committees make public much of the evidence they receive during inquiries. If you do not wish your submission to be published, you must clearly say so. If you wish to include private or confidential information in your submission to the Committee, please contact the Clerk of the Committee to discuss this. Please bear in mind that Committees are not able to investigate individual cases.

Personal information, such as address and contact details, should be provided separately from the body of your submission. You should be aware that there may be circumstances in which the House of Commons will be required to communicate information to third parties on request, in order to comply with its obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Submissions should be original work, not previously published or circulated elsewhere. Once submitted, no public use should be made of the submission unless you have first obtained permission from the Committee.

For further details about this inquiry, please contact Dr Antonia James, Committee Specialist, on 020 7219 2290.


Information about the Committee can be found at: http://www.parliament.uk/efracom

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