The UK’s Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has been abolished and Greg Clark is to leave his post as Secetary of State for Communities and Local Government to head up a new ministry called the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
Clark served as shadow energyà‚ secretary between 2008-2010.
Re-News website reports that climate change policy is expected to rest with the Department of Business, Energy and Industry.
According to the site, DECCà‚ will vacate its offices at 3 Whitehall Place and a new department for exiting the European Union will move in.
The news comes following weeks of speculation among the UK media this morning that the department of energy and climate change was to be abolished, just eight years after its creation.
The news has been greeted with alarm by environmental groups who believe axeing a department dedicated to tackling change sends out a very negative signal.
Former Labour leader Ed Miliband tweeted: “DECC abolition just plain stupid. Climate not even mentioned in new deptartment title. Matters because departments shape priorities, shape outcomes.”
Environmental law specialists ClientEarth’s Chief Executive James Thornton said: “At a time when the challenge of climate change becomes ever more pressing, the Government has scrapped the department devoted to tackling it. This is a statement of disregard for one of the most challenging economic, social and environmental issues humans have ever faced.à‚
“It sends a terrible signal at the worst possible time, undermining efforts to secure a clean, safe energy future.à‚
“It is now essential that Greg Clark proves the Government’s commitment to tackling climate change is undimmed. This decision will otherwise be a source of deep regret in the difficult years ahead.”
A spokesman for DECC told The Independent: “Nothing is changing. The commitment [to dealing with climate change] is still there.”