LONDON, 19 July 2006 ? "I believe that in the near future ? perhaps ten or fifteen years from now ? every adult in the UK will have an accurate idea of how much CO 2 they emit into the atmosphere each year, just as today we all have a fairly good idea of how much money we have in our bank accounts."

These were opening words from the keynote speech on the challenges and opportunities of climate change and energy security given today by Ford Motor Company's senior executive in Europe , Lewis Booth, at the first FT Plenary Address on International Business Day at the British International Motor Show.

Mr. Booth, who is the executive vice president, Premier Automotive Group and Ford of Europe, spoke of Ford Motor Company's belief that climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing society today. He stated: "All of us are responsible. We need concerted action in almost every human activity if we are to tackle the scale of the problem."

While around 80 percent of man-made CO 2 emissions are from non-transport sources, Mr. Booth made clear that the auto industry needed to play its part in helping to decrease CO 2 emissions and, more specifically, what Ford was doing in its own business operations.

"At Ford, we are now accelerating our plans, increasing our actions and, importantly, our investment in environmental technologies," said Booth.

As evidence of this "mindset change" at Ford Motor Company, Mr. Booth reiterated the commitment made in London by Ford on the eve of the motor show to invest 1 billion to develop a range of environmental technologies in Britain for the Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo brands.

As a result of these actions, in the next decade Britain's best-selling car ? the Ford Focus ? will be 20% more CO 2 efficient than it is today, achieving over 70 mpg and emitting less than 100 grammes of CO 2 per kilometre.

In total, over 100 models across the Ford and Premier Automotive Group brands will benefit from these advanced environmental technologies. The combined result will be a potential CO 2 saving in an average year equivalent to the total annual CO 2 emissions produced by Newcastle Upon Tyne .

"Ford has the largest manufacturing and engineering presence of any vehicle maker in Britain ," said Mr. Booth. "We're responsible for more than 80 percent of Britain 's total automotive R&D investment, and some 9,500 people work in our three R&D centres in Dunton, Essex, Whitley, Coventry and Gaydon, Warwickshire. The commitment we made earlier this week amounts to a doubling of the proportion of our British operations' spending on environmental technology.

"Our new investment means that over the next six years we will be offering customers more than 100 models and derivatives with reduced CO2 and improved fuel economy."

Mr. Booth also called for greater action from all stakeholders to help reduce CO2. "The challenges are considerable and I believe that when it comes to personal transportation they can only be properly addressed by an integrated approach: that is, a partnership of all relevant stakeholders, including the automotive industry, the fuel industry, government and consumers.

"All of us have the opportunity to do something about the future of our planet and work to arrest the momentum of climate change ? and that's a responsibility we owe to future generations."