Ed Davey supports call for business action on climate and energy

Energy & Climate Change Secretary, Ed Davey, believes there is a 'huge business opportunity for those who grasp the green mantle' and is urging companies to adopt clean energy and support climate policy at national and international level.

Speaking at the 10th anniversary conference of The Climate Group in London yesterday (28 April), Davey said that the nation’s businesses hold the key to delivering emissions reductions before a new global treaty comes into force.

“For a business to gamble that climate change won’t happen just doesn’t make commercial sense,” he said. “No boardroom worth its salt can avoid making the long-term risk assessments climate change threats require.”

The Climate Group, which works with businesses and governments to promote clean energy and technology, echoed Davey’s view at yesterday’s conference; claiming the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) call for a ‘clean revolution’ is now within reach, with plans to recruit more multinational companies to commit to a 100% renewables target by 2020.

Mark Kenber, the organisation’s CEO, said: “It’s a no-brainer for any smart business or political leader. About 80 % of the energy, technology, finance and policy needed to make the transition to a low carbon economy is already in place. We need to focus on scaling up and replicating the proven solutions.”

Kenber explained that the not-for-profit Climate Group is now working with businesses and politicians around the world on a range of new initiatives; to scale up climate finance, develop low-carbon business models and help governments replicate proven emissions reduction policies.

He also unveiled plans to recruit more multinational companies to commit to the likes of a new smart homes initiative, a programme to enable access to clean energy in rural India and a major summit in China to promote networking among global ‘cleantech’ businesses.

Addressing The Climate Group conference by video link, the First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond, highlighted that global corporations were investing in Scotland, transforming it into ‘a world-leading hub of wave, tidal and offshore wind energy’.

“Our renewable energy targets aren’t just good for the environment, they’re good for the economy,” said Salmond. “They provide certainty for business and investors. Billions of pounds are being invested in infrastructure, and thousands of jobs are being created.”

The Climate Group was launched 10 years ago; to work with businesses and governments to promote the positive business case around clean energy and technology. The global clean tech market is worth over US$2.5trn and will grow to more than US$5trn in size within the next 10 years.

Luke Nicholls

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