HC Deb 13 February 2004 vol 418 c71W
Llew Smith

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the operation and effectiveness of the Sustainable Energy Policy Network since its establishment under the Energy White Paper of February 2003; and how many times the Sustainable Energy Policy Advisory Board has met since its inception. [155229]

Mr. Timms

The Sustainable Energy Policy Network (SEPN) was established to drive forward the implementation of the Energy White Paper and will be judged on that basis. It comprises Government Departments, regulators, agencies and regional organisations which have a direct role to play in delivering the White Paper's commitments. The Government will report on progress in 2003–04 shortly after the Easter recess.

The network includes a number of structures: the Ministerial Group offers strategic direction and is chaired jointly by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry and the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; the Sustainable Energy Policy Advisory Board provides independent expert advice to Ministers. The Board met for the first time in December 2003 and its second meeting will be in March; the Programme Board comprises senior officials accountable to ministers for delivering the commitments set out in the White Paper.

Further details are set out in the SEPN website at http://www.dti.gov.uk/energy/sepn/index.shtml.