We will support green industry - Govt

It may be music to the ears of many environmental professionals, but many may have missed Government's latest announcement on how it hopes to help the sector, as it was drowned out by media coverage of the local elections.

To sum up, on May 1 Gordon Brown announced that it plans to do what it can to promote innovation, ensure the workforce has the skills and would use the financial clout of its procurement policy to stimulate growth in the market.

Speaking at an Environmental Industries Commission seminar at the Brownfield Exhibition (BEX) at SustainabilityLive! on Tuesday, Defra's Stephen Bass told delegates that Government was largely in agreement with the findings of the Commission on Environmental Markets and Economic Performance (CEMEP).

CEMEP was set up in November 2006 to investigate ways to turn climate calamity into economic opportunities.

Mr Bass explained how the Prime Minister wants Britain to remain at the forefront of the green industrial revolution, creating jobs and economic growth.

The Government has committed to working with business to make the UK one of the best places in the world to develop and introduce low carbon, resource efficient products and services.

The Government has identified four main prerequisites for building a low carbon economy:

  • A clear, consistent long-term policy framework to provide business with the confidence to invest and to enable the timely development of innovative products and services;

  • Policies that positively support innovation, to create the conditions that allow innovation to flourish;

  • Developing the right skills by drawing on the talent and creativity of the British people;

  • Fostering true partnerships between Government, business, trade unions, higher education bodies and others.

    At the launch of Government's response to CEMEP's findings earlier in the month, Environment Secretary Hilary Benn said: "The UK has a history of moving early on green issues. For example, the Climate Change Bill currently before Parliament is the first of its kind in the world, and it will create certainty for businesses and investors in green industry for decades to come.

    "The Government is committed to building a low carbon economy, here and around the world.

    "That means a complete change in the way we live and an economic transformation that will put Britain at the forefront of a technological revolution in the way we use and source our energy. It is the talent of our people that will bring about that revolution."

    Sam Bond

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