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Climate Change Act (Northern Ireland) 2022

Section 54: Regulations that amend or add an emissions target or amend a carbon budget

This section sets out the conditions which must be met before the Department can make regulations which amend an emissions target or add a new target or amend a carbon budget.

Under subsection (2), the Department is only able to make such regulations if–

  • The provision made by the regulations has been recommended by the Committee on Climate Change or is not substantially different from their recommendation, or

  • It is appropriate to make changes due to significant developments in United Kingdom or international law or policy, scientific knowledge about climate change or technology relevant to climate change.

Subsection (3) places a duty on the Department to have regard to certain matters when making such regulations. The matters are -

  • the views of the Climate Commissioner and the Just Transition Commission,

  • United Kingdom and international law or policy relating to climate change,

  • scientific knowledge about climate change, and

  • technology relevant to climate change.

If the Department is satisfied that it is appropriate to make the regulations as a result of significant developments in one of the above matters it does not have to have separate regard to that matter.

The purpose of this section is essentially to ensure that there is a strong justification and/or evidence to support making amendments to the key targets and elements of the Act.

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