UK 'can increase its targets on carbon emissions by 20%'

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The UK has the opportunity to increase its current targets for cutting carbon emissions by 20 per cent, according to new research.

Findings from the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR), WWF and RSPB have stated that its aim to cut 60 per cent of emissions is based on "out-dated" science.

Energy consumers in Britain would be affected by several of the suggested ways to meet a higher target, including the use of low-carbon electricity for heating and a programme to promote and maintain energy efficiency.

The IPPR's co-director Lisa Harker said: "For this to be achieved we would need a radical shift in the pace and scale of investment in low carbon technologies."

The latest findings on climate change have come after a report by the UK Energy Research Centre claimed many energy users could actually be cancelling out their efforts to become more energy efficient.

An example of a so-called "rebound effect" is when a family buys a fuel-efficient car but uses it more often than its previous vehicle.

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