GOVERNMENT BUILDING EMISSIONS PLAN TOO LITTLE TOO LATE - WILLOTT

March 10, 2010 1:30 PM

Jenny Willott, the MP for Cardiff Central and Liberal Democrat Shadow Secretary of State for the Cabinet Office, has today said that the £2.75 million programme for pilot projects to reduce the carbon footprint of Government buildings is 'too little too late'.

Speaking after Cabinet Office Questions, Ms Willott, said that the fund showed a lack real commitment by the Government to lead from the front in the fight against climate change.

Cabinet Office Minister Angela Smith MP replied in the Chamber that the money would create additional savings, which could then be invested in further energy saving. She claimed that plans to reduce emissions from Government building were 'on track'.

Commenting on the Minister's answer Ms Willott said:

"The idea that less than £3 million will have any real impact on the emissions from Government buildings is laughable. Any savings made from this original investment will not be nearly enough to bring about the kind of changes needed to tackle the incredibly poor efficiency ratings of many Government departments.

"It is astonishing how many Government buildings fall way below acceptable standards. Nearly a third of Government buildings were given the worst possible energy efficient ratings in 2010. Even Downing Street was only classed as an "E" rated building, way below the average.

"If we expect private businesses to lower their carbon footprint to ensure the UK meets its targets for emissions reduction by 2020, then it is only right that the Government leads by example and makes the real investment needed to bring government buildings to up to scratch."

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