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The government has announced more funding for researchers working to understand how climate change will affect the UK.

Environment minister Elliot Morley said yesterday that £3.5m has been awarded to Oxford University's Environmental Change Institute for the world-leading UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP). The money will be paid out over the next five years.

The UKICP was set up in 1997 to develop a national picture of climate change impacts in the UK. Since then it has helped establish climate change partnerships in all of the English regions, and is working on doing the same in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The research is directed by UKICP stakeholders and partners, at a regional level, and is shared freely with all public sector organisations.

The new grant will allow the UKICP to build on the work it has already done, the minister said, adding: "This contract shows the importance that Government continues to place on stakeholder-led research into the impacts of climate change, so that public and private sector organisations are able to prepare appropriate adaptation responses." ®

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