The British government's carbon emissions targets do not go far enough to prevent dangerous climate change, it has been claimed.
According to environmental scientists from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change, official advice being used to set the UK's carbon budget is "naively optimistic".
Ministers are expected to severely restrict carbon emissions when they introduce the first carbon budget next month.
However, the Tyndall Centre states that the conclusion of the European Committee on Climate Change (CCC) that ministers in the UK should slash carbon emissions by 34 per cent by 2020 is scientifically flawed.
The independent body claims that the EU has used unclear assumptions in coming to its decision on what amounts to a dangerous level of temperature rise which it has put at two degrees celcius.
"[The CCC's report is] compromised by its implicit need to deliver demanding but nonetheless politically palatable conclusions," the scientists add.
All 27 EU countries are legally bound to contribute to a reduction of 20 per cent in carbon emissions by 2020.
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