UK business ‘must clean up to stay competitive’

The UK’s key business sectors will have to decarbonise to remain competitive amongst foreign competition. That’s the suggestion from a new report released by CAFOD, Christian Aid, RSPB, Green Alliance, […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

The UK’s key business sectors will have to decarbonise to remain competitive amongst foreign competition.

That’s the suggestion from a new report released by CAFOD, Christian Aid, RSPB, Green Alliance, Greenpeace and WWF.

These groups claim important export sectors such as the automotive and chemicals industries risk missing out if they don’t quickly adapt to fast rising global demand for low carbon goods and services.

The chemicals sector contributes 13% of all the direct greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing – as global economies favour newer, cleaner production techniques, the UK will need to keep up or be at risk.

The global electric vehicle (EV) market is predicted to multiply by around five times by 2030 – the UK is currently lagging behind and importing more than it exports.

The UK’s financial and professional services sectors together contribute a total of £78 billion to the economy.

However, other countries are now threatening Britain’s advantage, with France now home to the top three banks for sustainability, as rated by investors.

Christine Allen, Director of Policy at Christian Aid said: “The Paris climate agreement has shifted countries all over the world onto a trajectory of cleaner development and blown the starting whistle on a race for new the technologies and markets needed to tackle climate change.”