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Ask engineers to manage climate change, MPs told

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ENGINEERS MUST not be overlooked when the government forms a new body to monitor progress on reducing CO 2 emissions, The Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE) told MPs this week.

The RAE said the proposed Committee on Climate Change should draw much of its membership from engineering institutions because climate change targets needed input from people with 'practical' knowledge of how to deliver the targets.

'It's really important that engineers of some seniority and repute are included in this body as commissioners or at the very least there should be a requirement to refer to bodies like RAE and the Royal Society, ' RAE vice president Dr Sue Ion told NCE. 'Otherwise engineering questions will not be given the same consideration as economic modelling.' In evidence to the Joint Committee on the Draft Climate Change Bill on Wednesday, the RAE also warned that a proposed membership of just 5-8 people would render the committee ineffective.

The new committee is proposed as part of the draft Climate Change Bill published by the government in March.

This proposes to make a 60% cut in carbon emissions by 2050 legally binding.

RAE evidence presented to the committee added: 'We would strongly advocate the inclusion of, or access to, suitably qualied and experienced engineering resources to ensure scenarios and options are appropriately scoped and costed and assessed for practicality of delivery.

'Given the depth and breadth of expertise needed, appointing a Committee on Climate Change of only 5-8 members capable of addressing all the relevant issues would be most diffcult.

'The Academy and the major engineering institutions can offer assistance through the nomination of appropriate experts.' Ion added that the body should have a membership of at least 25 and access to many more experts, in line with a new body, proposed in the recent Planning White Paper, to review major infrastructure projects.

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