The Aldersgate Group has published a Business Statement strongly supporting Government Chief Economists' proposal to commission a robust and independent review into the impacts of resource security and climate change on UK growth.
The statement recognises that resource insecurity, in many cases exacerbated by climate change, is already having a tangible impact on growth. These challenges cannot be tackled by business alone. It is essential that Government plays its part to understand and safeguard future prosperity.
The Aldersgate Group has written to the DECC Chief Economist, Steven Fries, enclosing the Business Statement and expressing signatories' support for the review. The Group has also co-signed a letter to the Treasury Select Committee, calling for an inquiry into the delay of the proposed review.
Peter Young, Chairman of the Aldersgate Group said: "It is vital that the UK responds to global recognition of the direct impact on growth and economic activity of resource constraints, greenhouse gas emissions and water insecurity. This is timely, urgent and essential to steer a future growth path which avoids loss of jobs, assets and competitiveness through neglect of future resource constraints and foreseeable price shocks."
An Aldersgate Group seminar has found that the UK could be at the forefront of providing technology solutions to global megatrends but needs a more ambitious vision and enabling framework to ensure success.
According to the SMARTer 2020 report by GeSI, ICT enabled solutions have the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 16.5%, create 29.5 million jobs and yield USD1.9 trillion of savings by 2020 worldwide.
On the 24th June 2013, Microsoft, GeSI and the Aldersgate Group hosted an industry event to explore the role of ICT and cloud computing to build world-leading industries in the UK and address global megatrends such as climate change and resource insecurity. The outcomes recommend how the Government's Information Economy Industrial Strategy could help meet these objectives. (To read these outcomes, please see the attached executive summary.)
Andrew Raingold, Executive Director of the Aldersgate Group, said: "we warmly welcome the publication of the Information Economy Industrial Strategy that was launched by the Prime Minister a few weeks ago. It sets out how Government and industry could work much more collaboratively on a long term vision that goes beyond political cycles to enable the UK to be a leader in this digital revolution. To be a success, it needs to address how the UK can provide the solutions to long term global trends, such as population growth, ageing populations, climate change and resource scarcity."
The Aldersgate Group has warmly welcomed a letter from 12 European Government Ministers which supports the EU ETS back-loading proposals and calls on the European Commission to bring forward structural reform proposals by the end of the year. In a joint statement, the Aldersgate Group also called on the Commission and Ministers to work together for early agreement on an EU 2030 Climate and Energy Framework.
Andrew Raingold, Executive Director of the Aldersgate Group, said: "Businesses are concerned that the EU ETS is not providing the right price signals to stimulate investment and growth in low carbon goods and services. Supply of carbon permits continue to dwarf demand which is threatening the viability of the European carbon market. Business leaders are calling for an urgent short-term rescue package and structural reform moving forward."