Drawing on expertise from organisations including the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership, an assessment of the overall energy implications of both a hydrogen economy and of large-scale use of fuels such as biodiesel will also be developed. Transport taxes will also be under continuous review to ensure they provide incentives for an early take-up of low-carbon vehicles and fuels.
The measures were announced in a White Paper released this week by Trade and Industry Secretary Patricia Hewitt as part of a string of measures which she believes will ensure the UK leads the world in developing greener technology.
Called Our Energy Future – Creating a Low Carbon Economy, it sets out how carbon dioxide emissions will be slashed by 60% by 2050.
Hewitt said: 'Our country needs a new energy policy. We need to make sure we have secure energy at affordable prices, but we need to use energy more efficiently and urgently address the impact we make on the environment.'
She warned that without urgent action to reduce carbon emissions, the Earth's temperature would rise faster than at any time in the past 10,000 years.
Hewitt added: 'The Government is serious about cutting carbon emissions, but we know this cannot be achieved without a fundamental review of the way we produce and consume energy. We need to use less by improving energy efficiency and we must match this with a major expansion in renewable energy.
'We are giving the clear direction that businesses need in order to make longer-term decisions to invest and innovate.'