development (SD), environment minister Michael Meacher said at the launch
of the annual progress report on SD in government today.
own environmental targets and progress on making SD a key factor in
all policy making.
Achievements over the past year include:
- All departments exceeded the current target for a 1% per year
reduction in greenhouse gas emissions for all buildings for both of
the last 2 years. In terms of carbon savings the improvement was 3%
in 2000/2001 and 7% in 2001/2002 against a baseline of 1999/2000
- Departments have moved quickly to purchase green electricity - some
are already exceeding the target of 5% set for next year.
- 6 departments are now recovering more than 40% of their office
waste, 2 more than last year. 5 more are recovering between 29% and
- 8 departments achieved the target to reduce water use in office
buildings to 11m3 per person per year by March 2002 in some or all
of their buildings.
The report also shows how further progress will be made towards
sustainable development though:
- Interdepartmental agreement on a new Framework for Sustainable
Development on the Government Estate, including cross-government
targets for travel, water and environmental management systems
- All departments with a Public Service Agreement submitting
sustainable development reports in support of their bids for
resources in the 2002 Spending Review
- Departments considering the impacts climate change may have on
their policy and operational responsibilities
Mr Meacher said:
'This report shows how we are stepping up our action to deliver
sustainable development in government, as part of our commitment to
deliver it for the UK as a whole.
'People are expecting more from the government on these issues. It is
vital that we practise what we preach on sustainable development,
with transparent reporting which does not just cover what we are
doing well but also the areas where we need to improve in future
'As well as continuing to monitor our environmental performance we
have launched some major new initiatives within government this year
- including new targets for the Government Estate - the buildings and
land managed by government departments.
'Our top priorities in the year ahead will be further development and
roll out of integrated policy appraisal tools, development of further
targets for the estate and finalising the scope for social as well as
environmental reporting on the Estate to more fully reflect the
contribution that departments can make to sustainable development.'
1. The Sustainable Development in Government 1st Annual Report is
published in 2 parts:
Part 1 is a summary report and provides an overview of progress
across government on policy and operational areas covered by the
Sustainable Development in Government initiative
Part 2 accompanies the summary report and provides details of
departments' performance in all the areas highlighted in Part 1. To
facilitate investigation of the performance of each department, and
to make effective use of resources, the data is being made available
as a database on the Sustainable Development in Government website.
2. Part 1 and an executive summary are available in hard copy from
Defra Publications, 10 Whitehall Place, London SW1A 2HH -
tel 020 7270 8782/8783.
3. The Sustainable Development in Government report is the successor
to the Greening Government Reports. It focuses on key actions to
incorporate sustainable development into policy making and to improve
the contribution that Departments make to sustainable development
through, for example, the running of their buildings, and purchase of
goods and services. This year's report contains a focus on social as
well as environmental impacts of running Departments.
4. The report covers 19 central departments and their executive
agencies which are covered by the Cabinet Sub Committee of Green
Ministers, ENV(G). It does not cover NDPBs or the wider public
5. The Framework for Sustainable Development on the Government Estate
was launched on 24 July 2002. It is a major new initiative to improve
management and reporting on sustainable development impacts by all
departments and includes challenging performance targets. The first 3
parts of the Framework have been published, including targets on
environmental management systems, travel and water. Further parts
will follow over the next year. When complete the Framework will
cover the following areas
Travel Procurement Estates Management
Energy Waste Water Biodiversity
Impacts as an employer (eg career development, work-life balance
Health and safety)
Impacts on the community