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Large UK Firms Call on Government to do More to Cut CO2

Large UK Firms Call on Government to do More to Cut CO2
LONDON - A group of some of the UK's largest companies has called on the British government to do more to help them reduce CO2 emissions, which are blamed for global warming.

The group, which includes oil giants BP Plc and Shell, utility Scottish Power and bank HSBC, said in a letter to Prime Minister Tony Blair on Friday they wanted clearer policy and more incentives.

They want the government to set targets for emissions trading and other related policies beyond 2012, the end of the last period for when detailed targets have been published.

The companies also called for incentives for investment in the development and application of new low carbon technologies and asked the government to "eliminate the policy inconsistencies and perverse incentives that undermine the effectiveness of climate policy".

In return the companies promised to support government action and to "dramatically" increase investment in low-carbon technologies and processes. The group said that while tackling climate change would impose costs on businesses, the UK's overall competitiveness need not be hurt by stricter environmental legislation.

Other signers of the letter included top executives from bank Standard Chartered, water utility AWG, airports operator BAA, speciality chemicals manufacturer Johnson Matthey and F&C Asset Management, which this week called on Exxon Mobil at its shareholders meeting to rethink its policies on climate change.

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