The Committee on Climate Change, the UK government’s climate watchdog, says that the country is well behind on meeting its carbon reduction targets.

Weather and weak economic conditions presented a distorted picture last year, when emissions were seen to have fallen.

David Kennedy
According to the FT, emissions fell by 7 per cent in 2011, but only 0.8 per cent of the reduction was due to specific low-carbon policy measures, the Committee on Climate Change said in its latest annual progress report to Parliament on Friday.

Those figures mean the rate of progress is only a quarter of where it needs to be.

Much of last year’s fall in emissions was due to a mix of mild weather, rising fuel prices, falling incomes and temporary power generation factors, said the committee’s chief executive, David Kennedy.

“But as the economy recovers it will be difficult to keep the country on track to meet carbon budgets,” he said.

The committee urges ministers to strengthen efforts in a range of areas, from encouraging more investor confidence in low-carbon power generation, to boosting home insulation rates and bolstering the electric vehicle market.

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