Industrial strategy needs better coordination with low-carbon policy

3rd March 2017

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Mitigation ,
  • Reporting ,
  • Generation


James Farrell

MPs have urged the government to embed its industrial strategy across Whitehall and stressed that it needed to complement the emissions reduction plan.

The parliamentary Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee’s inquiry into the industrial strategy concluded that there was little evidence of the strategic framework or coordination across government necessary to achieve the government’s aspiration of ‘an economy that works for all’.

In a report published today, the committee pointed to the failure of the housing white paper, published in February just after the industrial strategy was unveiled, to spell out how the government and the construction industry could collaborate to tackle the UK’s housing shortage.

The government should focus on cross-cutting policies to maximise opportunities for businesses on issues, including decarbonising energy intensive industries and automating and electrifying transport infrastructure, the MPs said.

The industrial strategy contains a commitment to meeting future carbon budgets, which the committee welcomed. However, MPs said they were ‘deeply worried’ about the significant gaps between the UK’s carbon reduction targets and current policy delivery.

The committee highlighted a report last year by the independent Committee on Climate Change which found that emissions cuts since 2012 had come almost entirely from the power sector.

Source: Committee on Climate Change

The BEIS committee said that this suggests the industrial strategy needs to include meaningful policies to support decarbonisation of industries and buildings.

Although support for clean energy technologies is proposed in the industrial strategy green paper, including the creation of an institute to work on battery and grid technology, the committee stressed the importance of the government spelling out how it would embed clean growth across the economy.

‘For our own part, we continue to see the balance of security of supply, decarbonisation and affordability as equal priorities,’ the BEIS committee report states.

The UK needed to be a world leader in the low-carbon transition, the committee said, adding: ‘The government needs to ensure that the emissions reduction plan and industrial strategy are coherent and consistent, with commitments in the industrial strategy to actively support delivery of current and future carbon budgets.’

The Aldersgate Group said that continued growth of low carbon markets such as offshore wind, electric vehicles, ICT and energy efficiency can both drive productivity and the government’s aim of an economy that works for everyone.

Nick Molho, the organisation's executive director, said: 'Supporting the continued growth of the UK’s low carbon economy provides the horizontal cut-through that the committee demands. The government’s industrial strategy must complement its emissions reduction plan to maximise growth in UK low carbon supply chains and provide the policy consistency that business needs.'

The committee also criticised the government’s proposals on skills, saying they were ‘deeply disappointing’, with the green paper failing to outline detailed proposals to encourage uptake of qualifications in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

It also found fault with the strategy for not clarifying how the government proposes to close the gap on infrastructure spending, education and research and development between the north and south of England.


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

Weather damage insurance claims hit record high

Weather-related damage to homes and businesses saw insurance claims hit a record high in the UK last year following a succession of storms.

18th April 2024

Read more

The Scottish government has today conceded that its goal to reduce carbon emissions by 75% by 2030 is now “out of reach” following analysis by the Climate Change Committee (CCC).

18th April 2024

Read more

The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) has issued a statement clarifying that no changes have been made to its stance on offsetting scope 3 emissions following a backlash.

16th April 2024

Read more

While there is no silver bullet for tackling climate change and social injustice, there is one controversial solution: the abolition of the super-rich. Chris Seekings explains more

4th April 2024

Read more

One of the world’s most influential management thinkers, Andrew Winston sees many reasons for hope as pessimism looms large in sustainability. Huw Morris reports

4th April 2024

Read more

Alex Veitch from the British Chambers of Commerce and IEMA’s Ben Goodwin discuss with Chris Seekings how to unlock the potential of UK businesses

4th April 2024

Read more

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Five of the latest books on the environment and sustainability

3rd April 2024

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close