The Clean Growth Plan is to be published in the autumn when Parliament returns after the summer recess, according to newly appointed climate change minister Claire Perry.
Speaking in her first appearance in the role during questions in the House of Commons this morning, the MP for Devizes explained her intention to publish the long overdue document following the return of MPs on 5 September 2017.
However, she was not clear how close to this date the CGP would be published, stating only: “My intention is to publish the plan when the House returns from the summer recess.”
“I look forward to cross-party discussion and, hopefully, consensus on a document that is hugely important both for Britain’s domestic future and for our international leadership,” she added.
Facing questions from the house, Perry was pressured by Labour’s Alan Whitehead to explain the delay in the document, which he pointed out was due to be published in the middle of 2016.
“A year and a half on from the original promise, we are now clearly defaulting on our commitment under the Climate Change Act 2008, which requires that the plan is published as soon as is reasonably practicable after the order has been laid,” he said.
“Is not the Minister ashamed of this lamentable failure to act on that legislative requirement to produce a report that is important to the future of climate change activity, and will she apologise to the House for the delay?”
Perry hit back with the suggestion that the delay since the Committee on Climate Change’s original recommendations for the fifth carbon budget were caused by Brexit, the recent general election and even the withdrawal of the USA from the Paris climate change agreement.
Prior to the election, former climate change minister Nick Hurd had said that the document was “in a holding pattern” due to pre-election purdah rules, although he added that more work was needed to complete the plan.
Perry continued this claim today by stating that she was “taking the time to ensure that the draft could be extended to become more ambitious.”