10 Jan 2011 11:01:04
MPs: Cabinet Office should take change of sustainability
A group of MPs is calling for the responsibility for overseeing the government's green policies to be moved to the Cabinet Office.
Currently Whitehall's sustainability agenda is overseen by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), but the Environmental Audit Committee is calling for this to change in light of funding for the Sustainable Development Commission being withdrawn.
Joan Walley, chair of the committee, said: "The sustainability agenda needs to be driven from the centre of government. Defra has the expertise, but it does not have the influence to get the rest of government to act more sustainably."
She added the Cabinet Office must take the reins, supported by the Treasury, in driving forward environmental policies if the coalition is to become the "greenest government ever".
In response, a Defra spokesperson told the BBC the department will be examining the content of the report.
The document is entitled Embedding Sustainable Development Across Government.
In May, prime minister David Cameron pledged to cut central government carbon emissions by ten percent in 12 months.