Assurances Needed to Put Sustainability at the Heart of UK Economic Model

Leading bodies from business, environment and professional institutions have today set out key assurances needed from Government to put sustainability at the heart of the UK’s economic model. 

Published as part of the Broadway Initiative, the assurances set out the key elements needed for a clear and coherent Environment Act that gives society strategic predictability on the long-term pathway for the environment, providing the basis for private and public sector investment in environmental improvement.

Commenting on the launch of the assurances, Martin Baxter, IEMA’s Chief Policy Advisor, said: “As part of the Broadway Initiative, we’ve set out the key requirements needed in the forthcoming Environment Act to establish a framework for environmental governance for the UK – in effect a new environmental constitution.”

“It is vital that the UK sets long-term objectives for protecting and improving the environment as we leave the EU.  The Environment Act is a one-off chance to create a coherent framework to put sustainability at the heart of our economic model and enable all parts of society to plan, invest and collaborate to substantially improve the environment on which we and future generations depend.”

Broadway Convenor, Ed Lockhart, said: “It’s clear that to improve our environment in any fundamental way we need a legal framework that respects the long-term nature of environmental challenges and their solutions, and enables businesses to factor the environment into their plans and investments from the earliest stage. The Environment Bill is the moment to make sure that happens.”

CECA Civil Engineering Director Peter Crosland said: “The CECA Environment Group are supporting the IEMA Broadway Initiative to help provide a clearer view as to how the environment might be governed after EU exit. The benefit to CECA members, if desires are realised, will be a more consistent and transparent approach to governance of our environment via the new Environment Bill.

“One example might be the reduction of regulation around waste – there are currently dozens of separate pieces of regulation which does nothing to help the efficiency of the construction industry.  There would also be the opportunity for CECA members to be pro-active in providing environmental solutions at the outset (of a project), rather than simply being reactive to government ‘end of pipe’ solutions later in the day.”

IEMA will continue to work as part of the Broadway Initiative to advocate for an ambitious new Environment Act.  The assurances will provide the basis for evaluating Government’s proposals when the Environment Bill is put before Parliament.