Treasury’s Spending Review to be audited for environmental impact

The Treasury’s Spending Review is to be audited for its environmental impact. The Environmental Audit Committee has commissioned the National Audit Office (NAO) to look into how effective it is as […]

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By Jacqueline Echevarria

The Treasury’s Spending Review is to be audited for its environmental impact.

The Environmental Audit Committee has commissioned the National Audit Office (NAO) to look into how effective it is as a tool to meet environmental protection and sustainable development objectives.

It will focus on whether the Spending Review takes into account the evidence on long term environmental risks and impacts.

The government’s Spending Review, which will be announced on 25th November, will set out its priorities for investment in the next parliament.

Last week Chancellor George Osborne pledged to spend £100 million in infrastructure projects, including energy, by the end of the decade.

Huw Irranca-Davies MP, Environmental Audit Committee Chair said: “Addressing environmental risks sooner rather than later can bring significant benefits for businesses, the economy and citizens. It is crucial that the government’s spending decisions do not saddle future taxpayers with higher costs as a result of avoidable damage to human health or the environment.

“We have asked the National Audit Office to assess whether the Spending Review process is informed by the best available evidence on the environmental impact of Government policies and fully takes into account the UK’s legal commitments on air quality, biodiversity and climate change.”

It also review the link between the Spending Review, departmental priorities and government’s environmental and sustainability metrics.