EU, UK carbon-reduction targets questioned, but Britain holds steady

Mon, 2007-08-13 10:29Bill Miller
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EU, UK carbon-reduction targets questioned, but Britain holds steady

UK’s Tony Blair signed up to the EU targets three months before he resigned as prime minister in June. They include a 20% reduction in EU greenhouse gas emissions, compared with 1990 levels, or 30% if other developed nations agree to take similar action.

A spokesman for Blair’s successor, Gordon Brown, said although the EU's aims were “ambitious,” UK was “on course to meet” its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol, ratified in 2002. Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks said four to five per cent of electricity comes from renewables and the country is on course for that to be three times as much - 15% - by 2015.

Environmental groups said instead of trying to meet commitments, however, they are trying to avoid them by using nuclear power, which they say is not renewable.

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On Friday, the Environmental Protection Agency's internal watchdog, the inspector general released a scathing report on the agency's failure to control leaks from the nation's natural gas distribution system.

The report, titled “Improvements Needed in EPA Efforts to Address Methane Emissions From Natural Gas Distribution Pipelines,” describes a string of failures by the EPA to control leaks of one of the most potent greenhouse gases, methane, from the rapidly...

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