The government is in the final stages of completing regulations for the forthcoming Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC). During a round-table event last week Niall Mackenzie, head of carbon markets for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), informed attendees that the government had acknowledged industry concerns about the scheme and was in the process of fine-tuning a definitive version.
Issues discussed at the event included possible ways of ranking organisations which have already implemented measures to reduce their energy use, against those which had so far not taken any steps to do so. Mr Mackenzie accepted that there was currently a ‘cliff edge’ whereby past efforts were rewarded in the first year of the scheme, but received little recognition thereafter. The revised version of the scheme is thus likely to include further recognition of earlier energy-reduction achievements in year two.
Renewable energy also provided an issue for debate: Many organisations which have invested heavily in renewables as part of their carbon reduction package have expressed disappointment that the CRC only registers energy used, rather than its source. Mr Mackenzie responded to this debate by outlining the fact that the CRC is an energy efficiency scheme rather than a means of promoting renewable energy, and that organisations which use energy from sustainable sources would be rewarded by alternative government initiatives.