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Report cover showing windfarm at sea

Department of Trade and Industry: Renewable Energy

“The Renewables Obligation is increasing the level of renewable generation, and thus helping reduce carbon dioxide emissions, though at a price to the electricity consumer. The Department needs to keep track of the scheme’s progress in improving the commercial viability of renewable generation and ensure that consumers benefit from reductions in generation costs.”

Published:
11 Feb 2005
Cover of UK Emissions Trading Scheme report

The UK Emissions Trading Scheme: A New Way to Combat Climate Change

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported today that the Emissions Trading Scheme has brought about a reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases and that the Scheme has benefited the UK economy. He noted that, whilst some reductions were likely to have happened without the Scheme, most of the reductions were generated … Read more

Published:
21 Apr 2004
Report cover showing images from Cambridge and MIT

Cambridge-MIT Institute

“CMI has the potential to generate considerable impacts. Many of these will be long-term and are intrinsically difficult to measure. After a challenging start, I am pleased that CMI and the Department of Trade and Industry have been taking steps designed to maximise long-term success. Public sector organisations are increasingly expected to manage innovation, and we look to them to learn from the experience of CMI to improve their appraisal and management of innovative projects.”

Published:
17 Mar 2004
Report cover showing satellite

Department of Trade and Industry: The United Kingdom’s Civil Space Activities

“There are many strengths to the United Kingdom’s space activities not least of which is a history of delivering lean, user focused programmes. The Partnership should better identify how it intends to benefit from the increased activity undertaken by the European Union in space, minimise project risk by early involvement in implementation, and better measure the benefits that space investment brings to the United Kingdom.”

Published:
16 Mar 2004
Nuclear power station

Risk Management: The Nuclear Liabilities of British Energy plc

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported today that contingent risks he and the Public Accounts Committee had identified following British Energy’s privatisation had materialised. The Department for Trade and Industry had clearly recognised the risks to the taxpayer arising from the nuclear liabilities of British Energy. However, while the Company appeared … Read more

Published:
6 Feb 2004
Report cover showing pylons

The New Electricity Trading Arrangements in England and Wales

“Ofgem, together with the electricity industry, has achieved much through the NETA programme of reforms. But my report shows that there are a series of questions that the regulator will need to continue to keep under close scrutiny. How much of the savings in the wholesale market will be passed on to retail customers? How sure can we be that the lights will stay on? And can Ofgem monitor the market so as to prevent market abuse distorting prices?”

Published:
9 May 2003
Report cover image showing an oak tree

PPP in practice: National Savings and Investments’ deal with Siemens Business Services, four years on

“This report shows that there are alternatives to bailing out the private sector. NS&I and Siemens Business Services have learnt valuable lessons in the operation of this project, which are pertinent to other public-private sector partnerships. A whole business approach, where decisions are based on what is best for the business rather than what is best for either the public and private sectors, needs to be adopted if the public and private sectors are to achieve their objectives, and the private sector needs to recognize the management challenge that PFI represents.”

Published:
8 May 2003
Report cover showing a police officer with the public

Public Private Partnerships: Airwave

Sir John Bourn, Head of the National Audit Office told parliament today that a new radio system for the police, Airwave, could deliver considerable benefits. For instance, Airwave will give a clear digital voice service and offers the possibility of data transmissions and remote access to police computers. The service, procured under the PFI by … Read more

Published:
11 Apr 2002
Report cover showing construction works at Outfall Sewer, London in 1902

Pipes and Wires

“The way that the regulators have used their price reviews to drive down the costs of the major utility networks while the quality of the service delivered has improved, represents a great success story. But regulation inevitably has its drawbacks and I am glad that the regulators are considering how to head off the risks we have identified to incentives and future investment.”

Published:
10 Apr 2002
Report cover showing a piggy bank plugged into an electric socket

Office of Gas and Electricity Markets: Giving Domestic Customers a Choice of Electricity Supplier

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, told Parliament today that since electricity supply competition began in September 1998 more than 6.5 million customers – one in four – have saved money by changing supplier. Domestic electricity customers as a whole have seen their electricity bills fall by some £750 million a year since … Read more

Published:
5 Jan 2001