Policy update - a statement on climate and energy
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This month IEMA will publish its revised climate change and energy position statement.
Four main policy areas are identified. First is a call for climate leadership at all levels as we approach and exceed environmental limits.
Action is needed to address the unsustainable trajectory, to minimise longer-term costs and to help organisations and communities make an effective transition to be low-carbon and climate-resilient.
IEMA supports and recognises a professional urgency on climate change and encourages individuals, businesses, organisations and governments to all show climate leadership.
The second call is for policy drivers that provide certainty and confidence and are not subject to short-term political change. The statement draws on a number of recent examples, including disruptive “policy journeys”, such as extensive changes to the CRC, and examples of commitment reversal and policy delays – for example, on zero-carbon homes.
Members have been clear that short- and medium-term policy confidence is a critical ingredient for supporting their work on transformational change.
The two other policy calls concern the need to embed climate change as a mainstream business issue and to increase transparency on climate change performance – for example, through GHG reporting.
The launch of the statement will be supported by the development of a climate and energy web portal with practice examples, resources and information on climate campaigns from members.
A policy group is being established and the statement used in engagement work ahead of the climate summit in Paris next year and the UK general election in May.
The Environment Agency has successfully prosecuted Southern Water for thousands of illegal raw sewage discharges that polluted rivers and coastal waters in Kent, resulting in a record £90m fine.
In Elliott-Smith v Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the claimant applied for judicial review of the legality of the defendants’ joint decision to create the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (UK ETS) as a substitute for UK participation in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).
None of England’s water and sewerage companies achieved all environmental expectations for the period 2015 to 2020, the Environment Agency has revealed. These targets included the reduction of total pollution incidents by at least one-third compared with 2012, and for incident self-reporting to be at least 75%.
Global greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture are projected to increase by 4% over the next 10 years, despite the carbon intensity of production declining. That is according to a new report from the UN food agency and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which forecasts that 80% of the increase will come from livestock.
Half of consumers worldwide now consider the sustainability of food and drink itself, not just its packaging, when buying, a survey of 14,000 shoppers across 18 countries has discovered. This suggests that their understanding of sustainability is evolving to include wellbeing and nutrition, with sustainable packaging now considered standard.
Billions of people worldwide have been unable to access safe drinking water and sanitation in their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a progress report from the World Health Organisation focusing on the UN’s sixth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 6) – to “ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030”.
New jobs that help drive the UK towards net-zero emissions are set to offer salaries that are almost one-third higher than those in carbon-intensive industries, research suggests.