Reports last week said the government would use a European Commission meeting to negotiate a lowering of the EU target to supply 20 per cent of energy from renewable sources by 2020.
A Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform spokesman insisted that the government is committed to its targets, although a scheme of credits for trading between countries is under consideration.
Environmental campaigners remain sceptical that the UK will reach the 20 per cent target. A briefing leaked this summer suggested that government advisers believe that only five per cent will be achieved in 13 years' time (Planning, 17 August, p5).
Greenpeace EU energy policy campaigner Frauke Thies commented that a trading system could lead to a lack of investment in some countries, which would seek to buy their share of the overall commitment.