Posted on: 19/01/2016
Prime Minister David Cameron has branded criticism of his Conservative government’s energy policy as “total, utter nonsense”.
Appearing before the House of Commons’ Liaison Committee, Cameron refuted suggestions from environmental groups, industry bodies and political figures that his government’s commitment to the Paris Agreement flew in the face of its domestic actions.
Former United States Vice-President Al Gore and ex-CBI Director-General John Cridland were among those who had criticised the Tories for cutting subsidies for renewable energy at home while helping to building international consensus in Paris.
Cameron dismissed Gore and Cridland’s comments as ““total, utter nonsense”.
Britain is ‘fulfilling green commitments’
Cameron said: “I couldn’t disagree more fundamentally with all of those people. I totally disagree with anyone who says that on the one hand Britain has helped to pioneer the climate change agreement and on the other hand is somehow backsliding on its green commitments.
“On any reasonable assessment, you would say that Britain is more than fulfilling its green commitments.
“Whether it’s the development of the world’s first Green Investment Bank, the massive investment we made to climate finance or the legislation and the action we’ve taken here in our own country, I think we’ve got a very good record to speak of.
“That’s why, in the past year, UK greenhouse gases fell by 15% – the biggest reduction ever in a single parliament.”
Energy efficiency, transport and heat
MPs on the liaison group – which is made up of chairs of other parliamentary committees – also quizzed the Prime Minister over his government’s record on energy efficiency, renewable heat and transport.
Cameron responded: “Britain has got one of the most advance systems of climate legislation and targets and carbon budgeting anywhere in the world.
“In this parliament, we are going to be doubling our investment in low-carbon energy to £11 billion.
“We’ve got one of the largest solar installations for almost any country, and the largest offshore wind industry.”
> Watch Cameron appearing before the committee