Alan Meale was taken two miles from Peterborough train station on Friday in a Ford Lincoln, which does 17 miles to the gallon in the city.
Then he told a meeting of representatives of the Greater Peterborough Commerce, Training and Enterprise Council: "The way we travel is damaging our towns, harming our countryside and already changing the climate of the planet."
A Friends of the Earth spokesman said: "I think his choice of car is sending out the wrong message.
"It is a bit inconsistent with the Government's policies on transport."
But a spokesman for the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions defended Mr Meale's transport choices, saying: "The minister was able to make the majority of his journey by train."