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Page added on March 31, 2005

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CO2 rise forces energy rethink

Carbon dioxide emissions are rising rapidly in the UK, forcing the government to consider a range of new measures to keep its pledge to combat climate change.

Figures from the Department of Trade and Industry yesterday show that rather than falling as planned, carbon dioxide emissions have risen rapidly – by 2.2% in 2003 and 1.5% in 2004.
Among the actions being considered by the government review are:

· A review of wind power and other renewables to see if they can deliver more carbon dioxide savings;

· Large scale investment in the next generation of tidal, wave and solar systems;

· Consideration of whether a new generation of nuclear power stations is needed;

· Tax breaks and subsidies for energy efficient household appliances;

· New building regulations to make houses and businesses more energy efficient;

· Carbon taxes, including rises in fuel duties;

· A reduction in prices of alternative fuels and subsidies for bio-diesel made from oil seed rape.

Although some of the measures have already been trailed as under consideration, others are controversial, particularly the reconsideration of the nuclear question. These will not be in the public arena until after the general election.

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