Referendum campaign poor on environment, IEMA members believe

9th June 2016

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Business & Industry ,
  • Manufacturing ,
  • Chemicals ,
  • Politics & Economics ,
  • England



More than 80% of environment and sustainability professionals believe the electorate have had too little information to be able to take environmental issues into account when they cast their vote.

Members responding to an IEMA poll this week believe that both sides of the campaign have poorly addressed environment and sustainability issues in the lead up to the referendum, with 87% believing these should receive a higher profile in the remaining time before the vote on 23 June.

More than half of the 1,200 respondents (51%) report having to provide information to friends and family on the potential environmental implications of the UK leaving the EU because of shortcomings in the information provided by the Vote Leave and Britain Stronger in Europe campaign groups.

Martin Baxter, IEMA’s chief policy advisor, said: ‘Whatever the outcome of the ballot, it is essential that voters have sufficient information to be able to factor these issues into deciding how they cast their vote.’

The survey also asked members about aspects of European environmental policy. Two-thirds (67%) believe that the transition to a circular economy would best be achieved by implementing the European Commission’s circular economy package, rather than developing UK-specific measures (33%).

The majority (71%) of respondents believe that opportunities for business collaboration on the circular economy would be reduced if in the event of Brexit.

Half of environment and sustainability professionals believe that legal standards for air quality would be reduced if the UK were to leave the EU, with 88% of respondents saying a pan-European approach is required to complement and support national level policies in addressing air pollution.

On chemicals, 94% of members with experience of the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of CHemicals (REACH) say the regulation has been very or moderately effective in controlling the use of chemical substances.

One-third (34%) of respondents think the overall environmental benefits of REACH outweigh the costs to business and consumers; 44% believe the benefits are balanced by the costs; and 22% say the costs outweigh the benefits.


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

Transform articles

Scotland to scrap its 2030 climate target

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

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

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

Five of the latest books on the environment and sustainability

3rd April 2024

Read more

The UK’s major cities lag well behind their European counterparts in terms of public transport use. Linking development to transport routes might be the answer, argues Huw Morris

3rd April 2024

Read more

Ben Goodwin reflects on policy, practice and advocacy over the past year

2nd April 2024

Read more

A hangover from EU legislation, requirements on the need for consideration of nutrient neutrality for developments on many protected sites in England were nearly removed from the planning system in 2023.

2nd April 2024

Read more

It’s well recognised that the public sector has the opportunity to work towards a national net-zero landscape that goes well beyond improving on its own performance; it can also influence through procurement and can direct through policy.

19th March 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