The British Cement Association is supportive of the Government’s aim of achieving a 60% reduction in CO2 emissions on 1990 levels by 2050, as announced in today’s Queen’s Speech, and the enshrining into law of the target.
While there have been calls from other quarters for the government to go further in its Climate Change Bill, care must be taken not to inadvertently harm the competitiveness of UK industry through the introduction of unwarranted green taxes. Greater Government support for investment in energy efficiency and in resources for the acceleration of the deployment of innovative technologies, such as carbon capture and storage, will be necessary if the UK is to meet its climate change commitments.
The setting of interim targets/ milestones for reducing CO2 emissions would be a realistic mechanism for delivering cuts in emissions and would provide industry with greater certainty for capital investment strategies in new plants and technology. This is fundamental if industry is to have a real chance of meeting the Government’s target of a 60% reduction in CO2 emissions on 1990 levels by 2050.
British Cement Association Chief Executive, Mike Gilbert, commented, ‘the cement industry is working actively to tackle climate change and has reduced its direct CO2 emissions by around 28% since 1990. This has meant a saving of over three million tonnes of CO2 over this period’.
The establishment of an independent carbon committee to work with Government to reduce emissions over time and set out monitoring and reporting arrangements to Parliament is a sensible approach; it should increase the transparency of the new measures, as well as of the performance of sectors towards meeting their CO2 emissions targets. The Government has rightly focussed its efforts on carbon reduction across the economy.
The British Cement Association says it looks forward to the publication of the Bill and working with the Government to achieve balanced and workable legislation.