Low carbon economy – reality of dream?

The Carbon Trust, a new independent company initially funded by the DETR and the Devolved Administrations as part of the UK’s Climate Change Programme, today announced an integrated programme of measures designed to accelerate the take-up of low carbon technologies throughout Britain. The Trust will consist of a non-executive board plus a number of advisory committees.

Tom Delay, the new chief executive, in his first public appearance in his new role said, “We must ensure that the right balance is struck between long and short term objectives. The Carbon Trust intends to build on the success of the Energy Efficiency Best Practice Programme (EEBPP).” Planned activities include creating a new website, an information helpline and a model to determine what developing a low carbon economy would actually entail.

The Government’s Enhanced Capital Allowances scheme provides fiscal incentives to invest in eight generic technology areas. The Carbon Trust intends to enlarge the current R & D programme. “The research portfolio is small but we will enlarge it considerably,” said Delay. “And it isn’t just a ‘better boiler’, it is a holistic view. For example, it would be much better for the environment if goods were produced that lasted much longer, thus saving energy and raw materials in the long term.”

A carbon trading pilot is scheduled for next year. The mechanisms are there. All industry needs to do is use them.

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