New report: What role can the public sector play in delivering a green recovery?
edie has this week published the latest in a new series of reports looking at how businesses from key sectors can respond to the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic by focusing on a green recovery. This time, the focus is on the public sector.
The carbon footprint of the UK’s health and social care sector has decreased by 19% since 2007, despite recording a 27% increase in activity over the same period. A £1bn funding scheme aimed at spurring green innovation and creating new jobs to drive the nations towards net-zero, has a specific focus on the public sector, and was unveiled in 2020. In short, all signs pointed to the sector being a huge driver in the UK’s decarbonisation.
But then the coronavirus pandemic hit. Public sector workers have rightly been lauded as heroes for their efforts to protect society from the impacts of the pandemic, but with public sector bodies stretched to their very limit, there is a possibility that a focus on the low-carbon trajectory disappears.
This new edie report, sponsored by Centrica Business Solutions and supported by a foreword from the UK100, outlines that the sector is still very much focused on net-zero through the lens of a green recovery,
As part of edie’s brand-new Mission Possible: Green Recovery campaign – which supports sustainability, energy and CSR professionals on our collective mission to drive a green recovery across all major industries in the UK – this latest series of reports will explore why a green recovery is so important for the respective industries being analysed; what a green recovery actually looks like for businesses large and small within those industries; and how sustainability and energy professionals can drive a green recovery from within.
The report uses exclusive results from edie’s green recovery survey of 243 sustainability and energy professionals and has also been produced with guidance from in-depth discussions with a steering panel of sustainability experts from some of the world’s most respected public sector organisations in the vanguard of sustainability leadership.
The report notes how public sector organisations are turning to “placed-based” collaboration to trial innovative new solutions that respond to the climate crisis. It also notes the appetite and optimism within the sector to achieve a green recovery.
However, challenges remain. Indeed, in this current economic downturn, the sector is concerned that spending on low-carbon solutions could be limited, while others are worried that policy has not been enabling enough.
“With the upcoming COP26 summit this November in Glasgow, this is an incredibly timely report from edie, and they should be congratulated for putting it together and for Centrica Business Solutions for supporting it,” the UK100’s director Polly Billington wrote in the report.
“So I heartily welcome this report and look forward to working with everyone in the public sector, supported by private sector partners, to deliver on this huge challenge. Mission Possible – and Essential.”
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