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Last Updated: Friday, 16 December 2005, 13:06 GMT
Whitehall 'missing' green targets
Rubbish at a landfill
Departments are creating too much waste, the report says
Government departments are failing to meet targets on cutting pollution and waste, a report says.

The Sustainable Development Commission (SDC) found the Law Officers' Departments had only met 31% of targets - the worst performance.

The best was the Office for National Statistics, reaching three-quarters of its targets in areas such as recycling, fuel use and water wastage.

SDC chairman Sir Jonathon Porritt said there were some "truly hairy findings".

'Not getting to grips'

He added: "It's particularly worrying that the government isn't getting to grips with the same sustainable management measures that it has so enthusiastically imposed on the private sector."

Nine departments failed more than 50% of their targets.

The second worst-performing was the Cabinet Office, achieving 33.8% of targets, followed by the Department of Health and Foreign Office - both on 37.5%

The second most successful was the Department for the Environment, Food and Regional Affairs, meeting 70.6% of targets.

The report - Leading By Example? Not Exactly - complains of "poor performance and patchy data".

However, most of government has already met its 2008 target to create 10% of energy from renewable sources.

Meanwhile, a "good proportion" has met the March 2006 target for at least 10% of cars to be alternatively fuelled.

According to the SDC, government departments cover an area of more than a quarter of a million hectares, emitting about as much carbon dioxide as Liverpool.

The government established its across-the-board environmental targets in 2002.

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