Parliamentary committee tells climate minister Greg Barker not to backtrack

Government “schizophrenia” on climate change is undermining green investment, MPs have warned.

MPs from all sides called on climate change minister Greg Barker not to backtrack on green policy, after he called for a review of the UK’s commitment to cutting carbon much faster than the rest of Europe.

But MPs on the Environmental Audit Committee warned Barker he was sending mixed messages to the market.

Labour MP and committee chairwoman Joan Walley told the BBC: “Unfortunately, the government’s somewhat schizophrenic attitude to climate change seems to be undermining that confidence.

“The chancellor’s comments last week show that five years on from the Stern report, the Treasury still doesn’t get climate change - or the risk it poses to global stability and economic prosperity.”

Zac Goldsmith, a Conservative committee member, said policymakers must recognise “that with the stroke of a pen, they can make a good investment bad”.

“Unless they provide real long-term certainty, the transition to a low-carbon economy will be slower and bumpier than it needs to be,” he added.