Over 200 attend parliamentary launch of IEMA skills campaign

11th December 2014

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Business & Industry ,
  • Training ,
  • CPD ,
  • Qualifications ,
  • Skills


Alessandra Rodari

More than 200 environmental and sustainability professionals attended the official launch of IEMA's skills campaign at the House of Commons.

At the event yesterday, IEMA chief executive Tim Balcon called on the government and businesses to improve sustainability skills across the UK economy, after its survey found that only 13% of organisations are fully confident that they have the skills to compete in a sustainable economy.

This skills gap is limiting the ability of businesses and organisations to capitalise on the economic opportunities of being more sustainable, he said. Research by IEMA earlier this year showed that businesses could save between £5,000 to more than £1 million a year, depending on their size and sector, through more efficient use of resources.

IEMA has issued a four-point action plan on skills:

  • Place sustainability at the heart of business strategy
  • Integrate sustainability skills into the centre of all organisations
  • Make sustainability mainstream through training and education
  • Embed sustainability across the economy, encouraged by government commitment to a skills strategy

“Good quality people and their skills are the change makers – which is why it’s vital that sustainability skills become pivotal to the operations of an organisation,” said Balcon.

The event was hosted by Joan Walley MP, who chairs the Environmental Audit Committee, and sponsored by the construction business, Wilmott Dixon. Rob Lambe, managing director at Wlimott Dixon, told leading figures from environmental consultancies, engineering companies and commercial businesses, that improving skills is vital if companies are going to benefit from the opportunities emerging from sustainable business practices.

Lambe highlighted the construction industry’s Supply Chain Sustainability School, a virtual learning environment launched in 2012, which aims to help construction suppliers and subcontractors develop their sustainability knowledge and competence, to show how the construction industry is working to close the sustainability skills gap.

Meanwhile, the business department (BIS) has announced that it will establish a skills centre for the wind industry in the Humber area. The National College for Wind Energy is expected to open in late 2016, and will award students with professional qualifications, as well as running bespoke programmes sponsored by employers.


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 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

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

Vanessa Champion reveals how biophilic design can help you meet your environmental, social and governance goals

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

A project promoter’s perspective on the environmental challenges facing new subsea power cables

3rd April 2024

Read more

Senior consultant, EcoAct

3rd April 2024

Read more

Around 20% of the plastic recycled is polypropylene, but the diversity of products it protects has prevented safe reprocessing back into food packaging. Until now. David Burrows reports

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