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Mr. Letwin: Again, I will not detain House for more than 30 seconds. Nobody was debating that fuel cells produce water; that is essential to the operation of a fuel cell. The problem with my hon. Friend's remarks is that water vapour is not a greenhouse gas.
Mr. Chope: I am surprised that my right hon. Friend should say that. If that is his view, I hope that he has written a letter to The Sunday Telegraph in response to the letter in the letters column of 12 March 2006. It is a short letter, headed "Carbon dioxide is not the culprit". It criticises The Sunday Telegraph for making a common error in saying that carbon dioxide
Mr. Chope: I am relating the letter to the amendments, Madam Deputy Speaker. My right hon. Friend the Member for West Dorset challenged me on whether water vapour is a greenhouse gas, so I am citing a letter from The Sunday Telegraph.
Mr. Chope: I hope that the insurance policy that we all have against defamation will protect my right hon. Friend when he goes outside the House and says to Mr. Anthony Brookes, from Charlwood in Surrey, "You're a nut."
Mr. Chope: This is an area of debate and, I submit, dispute. I certainly would not be so bold as to describe anyone who writes to The Sunday Telegraph as a nut. The correspondent says, and this is very relevant
Mr. Chope: The correspondent makes the point that there are large vested interests in climate change that are endeavouring to force us to spend billions of pounds on CO 2 reduction when the poorest nations of the world remain ill-served. Obviously we do not have expert opinion here, but the correspondent is saying that if water vapour is indeed a greenhouse gas
I know that the hon. Gentleman has many powers, but I do not suggest that he should stop cloud formation. Cloud formations would come under the category of non-anthropogenic. I am talking about
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anthropogenic water vapour, which is, in my submission, a greenhouse gas on the basis of what Mr. Brookes says.
Mr. Chope: Obviously, if a household wants to be economical in its use of electricity, one of the best things to do is to boil a kettle in the morning and put the surplus product from the kettle into a thermos flask, which avoids the need for the kettle to be re-boiled later in the day. I fear that not enough people are carrying out that process, so an avoidable waste of electricity is occurring. The hon. Gentleman makes a significant point.
Malcolm Wicks: We are all enjoying this satire on some of the wacky ideas around the area, but the hon. Gentleman's research assistant has misled him. He will have to wait two more weeks for April fool's day.
Madam Deputy Speaker: Order. May I remind the hon. Gentleman of what I have already said? I think that we have heard sufficient from the letters columns of The Sunday Telegraph. Perhaps he will address his remarks more relevantly to the amendment.
We know that the list in Government amendment No. 52 sets out sources of energy and technologies that are not purely what we might describe as renewable or green. As a consequence, sources of energy will be allowed to be used as a substitute for nuclear power, which does not generate any CO 2 and thus greenhouse gas, although they are less efficient. I do not understand why the promoter of the Bill and the Government seem to have it in for nuclear, because if we used more nuclear energy we would be able to reduce CO 2 emissions.
A lot of those systems use gas efficiently, but they are not renewable sources of energy. He is right to make it clear to the House that the Bill addresses not just renewable sources of energy, but the efficient use of fuel sources that will eventually run out.
: That is precisely why the Bill's title is the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Bill, not
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the climate change and renewable energy Bill. The whole purpose of the Bill is to deal with not only renewables, but the most efficient use of several forms of energy.
Mr. Chope: But what is sustainable? Who is defining sustainable? The hon. Gentleman has declared an interest and had the Bill drafted for him by the Sustainable Energy Partnership. Why is nuclear energy not sustainable? I would not wish to refer again to lots of newspaper articles, Madam Deputy Speaker, but I read a fascinating article recently.
Mark Lazarowicz: May I make it clear to the hon. Gentleman that although I had assistance in the preparation of the Bill from the Sustainable Energy Partnership and drew on some of its ideas, it was not responsible for the detailed drafting?
Mr. Chope: The hon. Gentleman will accept that one of the things that binds all the bodies in the Sustainable Energy Partnership is their hatred of nuclear generation and nuclear power, which is why they have defined sustainable energy as any energy coming from a non-nuclear source. That is one of the mischiefs that we are trying to expose.
There was an interesting debate in the columns of one of our national newspapers in the past week on whether the best Greens and environmentally concerned people supported nuclear as a solution to the problem, or preferred renewables. I will not go into that debate in detail, but we must be aware that the promoter of the Bill and the Sustainable Energy Partnership are coming at the matter from a position of self-interest and prejudice against nuclear generation and the retention and renewal of this country's nuclear capacity.
As my hon. Friend the Member for Kettering (Mr. Hollobone) said, combined heat and power systems are not renewable. The systems can involve the use of refuse-derived fuel. My right hon. Friend the Member for West Dorset will know that there is quite a lot of controversy about such fuel because there must be a process of incineration and combustion before it can be created. That process can result in noxious emissions and is a controversial way of dealing with this country's waste. Gasification and pyrolysis are obviously other ways of turning waste into fuel.
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