The UK Treasury denies that it has a preference for big energy companies after the department’s quarterly register showed that Treasury ministers had met energy intensive sectors seven times more often than green energy representatives.
It emerged that Chancellor George Osborne has not met a single green sector representative since the coalition came into office, while Treasury ministers have met with representatives from fossil fuel and energy companies; airports and airlines; and the motoring lobby and car manufacturers on 119 occasions since May 2010.
Treasury ministers have held 17 meetings with either green campaign groups or clean energy lobbyists during the same period, reports the Guardian.
The Treasury has long been accused of harbouring an anti-green bias.
On Monday, Tim Yeo, the Tory chair of the Commons energy and climate change select committee, said: “The Treasury has never been signed up to the green agenda, but this has got much more serious in the past year.
Their interventions on the energy bill, and clear interference over [renewable energy subsidies] ROCs have shown this – it all adds up to a clear sign that they are not supportive of progress on the low-carbon energy sector.”
But the Treasury have dismissed claims that big energy companies have its ear with a spokesman saying: “The chancellor and Treasury ministers are fully engaged in energy and climate change policy.
Amongst other policies, the chancellor introduced the world’s first carbon price floor, an important step towards making this the greenest government ever.
Ministers meet environmental groups on a regular basis to discuss a range of issues, as well as the businesses – including energy companies and manufacturers – that play a vital part in the transition towards a low-carbon economy.”
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