The UK's carbon emissions rose by 1.25% last year, according to provisional government data, but Britain remains on course to meet its Kyoto Protocol goal. The main reason was a move from gas to coal for electricity generation.

Emissions of all greenhouse gases in the Kyoto deal were up about 0.5%, but are still below the target of a 12.5% cut from 1990 by the period 2008-2012. Environmental groups say the rise shows Britain is making no real progress on cutting carbon dioxide emissions. And Environment Secretary David Miliband said it demonstrated the need for increased action on climate change.

The UK produced total greenhouse emissions equivalent to 658.10 million tonnes of CO2 last year. This was down about 15% from the 1990 figure of 775.20 million tonnes. Carbon dioxide output rose from 544.2 million tonnes in 2005 to 560.6 million tonnes in 2006, a significant rise compared to previous years.

The nation's CO2 output is now only 5.25% below the 1990 figure which is used as the baseline for the main Kyoto Protocol gases.