Climate Change minister says energy contest is "a great success"

Whitehall launched a cross-department competition at the beginning of the month to reduce the government’s energy use. With only a week to go until the Whitehall Energy Competition deadline, Climate […]

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By Tom Gibson

Whitehall launched a cross-department competition at the beginning of the month to reduce the government’s energy use.

With only a week to go until the Whitehall Energy Competition deadline, Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “Everyone needs to keep up the pace if we are to reduce emissions on the government estate by 10%.”

Government cannot ask people to reduce their emissions without cutting our own emissions, people can now see for themselves that we are doing just that.”

However, with only the Department of Work and Pensions currently meeting the target (at an impressive 13% reduction) does the competition really mean anything? As of today, the league table showed six departments had in fact increased emissions and with no penalties in place, critics say there is no real incentive to reduce emissions.

The Department for Work and Pensions are the top dogs with an emissions reduction of 13%. Behind them are the Department of Energy and Climate Change and Number 10 on 4% and 3% reductions respectively. At the opposite end are the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department of Health, both with a 10% increase in emissions.

The monthly targets act as part of a pledge made by David Cameron when the new government took office to reduce Whitehall’s energy consumption by 10% after their first year in office.