IEMA reviews political party manifestos

19th June 2024


Ahead of the UK general election next month, IEMA has analysed the Labour, Conservative, Liberal Democrat, and Green Party manifestos in relation to the sustainability agenda.

The Labour Party manifesto was praised for recognising the interdependencies of the climate and biodiversity crises, with commitments to expand nature-rich habitats such as wetlands, peat bogs and forests.

However, IEMA argued that the party must do more to prioritise circular economy principles, and devise a clearer plan for growing the number of green skills and jobs required. Read more here: IEMA - Labour sets out plans for Great British Energy at manifesto launch


The Conservative manifesto describes the party’s plans on energy as “a pragmatic and proportionate approach to net zero”, and includes proposals to treble offshore wind capacity and build the first two carbon capture and storage clusters.

However, like Labour’s manifesto, it is light on green skills and jobs and the circular economy. Read more here: IEMA - Conservative Party launch election manifesto


The Liberal Democrats were the first of the major political parties to launch their manifesto, which echoes IEMA's policy asks for a swifter move to net-zero standards in new buildings, and makes many references to the need for investment in skills, including Lifelong Skills Grants.

Post-Brexit farming trade deals come under attack for undercutting the UK’s high environmental standards in the farming sector, which they plan to address by introducing a general duty of care for the environment and human rights in business operations and supply chains. Read more here: IEMA - IEMA reviews the Liberal Democrat manifesto for the 2024 General Election


As you would expect, the Green Party manifesto has strong focus on the environment, including a £40bn investment plan for the green economy, the removal of all oil and gas subsidies, and introduction of a carbon tax on all fossil fuel imports and domestic extractions.

Surprisingly, the manifesto does not touch on the role of circular economy in the transition to net zero – something that IEMA has prioritised in its call for a national circular strategy. Read more here: IEMA - The Green Party manifesto leads the charge on environment


Image credit: Shutterstock

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