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MPs scupper plans to introduce decarbonisation target

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MPs have rejected an amendment which would have seen a decarbonisation target included in the Energy Bill

Voting in the commons this afternoon (4 June), MPs rejected a change to the Energy Bill which would have introduced measures to decarbonise the UK’s electricity generation.

The amendment to the Energy Bill, proposed by the former conservative minister Tim Yeo, was rejected by 290 votes to 267.

The Energy Bill sets out an agenda for reforming the electricity market with the intention of driving growth in the low carbon infrastructure and manufacturing supply-chains.

The decision to omit a decarbonisation target from the bill had received much criticism from green campaigners.

It had been predicted that the renewables sector would benefit from the amendment, as electricity suppliers aimed to reduce their carbon emissions to nearly zero by 2030.

John Alker of the UK-GBC said: ‘There was a remarkable degree of consensus, from both private sector and NGOs, about the importance of a decarbonisation target in the Bill. Some coalition MPs chose to listen to the evidence and stand up and be counted this afternoon – sadly, not quite enough.

‘The real danger is that this sends another signal to business that government isn’t serious enough about the future direction of travel on carbon, when progressive businesses are crying out for political leadership and policy certainty’.

There is still a chance that a decarbonisation target could be introduced as the Energy Bill moves forward into the House of Lords.

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