White paper with grey areas

The UK aims to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by about 60 per cent by the year 2050 as a part of its efforts to curb global warming, according to a government energy white paper.

But critics feel that the document fails to spell out the government's stand on producing a fifth of the country's electricity from green sources by 2020. The current goal is to produce 10 per cent of electricity from green power by 2010, up from about three per cent at present. The white paper mentions that a 60 per cent cut in CO2 emissions is possible only if renewables contribute to between 30 per cent and 40 per cent of the country's electricity generation.

The UK could halve its emissions by improving energy efficiency, and the white paper does say that new building regulations are required to reduce energy use at home. However, the white paper dodges the controversial issue of nuclear power.