Government must act as a beacon for Net Zero

BCC Director General, Shevaun Haviland, will use an appearance at a key Climate Change debate today to call for Government to set out a clear pathway for business on Net Zero.

She will be appearing at the Climate Innovation Forum 2023 to debate the UK’s response to the US Inflation Reduction Act and how the economy reorientates towards Net Zero.


Among the key arguments she will put forward are: 

  • All major Government spending and policy decisions should be viewed through a green lens to check they help deliver the UK’s Net Zero aim.
  • A partnership between Government and business is vital to meeting this commitment.
  • Action must be taken now, if UK business is to remain competitive in a global race for investment.
  • Reaching Net Zero means action beyond energy production – including upgrading our transport systems, homes, businesses, and land use.
  • There must be a step change in the way we move people and goods, how we heat our buildings and what we produce and consume.

The recommendations are based on a report, by the Advisory Business Group, which has been sent to the Government’s independent statutory Climate Change Committee (CCC) for consideration.

The group, which is chaired by Shevaun, was formed last November by the CCC to provide solutions from the business community to keep the UK’s Net Zero commitment on track.


Ahead of today’s debate, Shevaun said:

“We are already seeing the devastating impact of climate change on our planet, there is no way to sit this out. The damage it will cause to our economy will also be devastating.

“At the same time this is a huge opportunity for UK Plc. The US, the EU and China all know this – that’s why they are investing £100bns in sustainable and low-carbon technology.

“We don’t have that kind of money, but it is possible for the UK to remain competitive and seize a potential £1trn boost to our economy.

“The UK has great strengths – renewable energy, green finance, engineering, professional services, cutting edge manufacturing and R&D.

“What we need to see from Government is a deeper policy understanding of the issues and how it plans to steer the economy towards Net Zero by 2050.

“Businesses wants greater certainty about the new technologies, systems and services that will form the foundations of Net Zero.

“If Government works more closely with us on this, it could set off a chain reaction that will unlock investment, promote innovation and ultimately set the UK on a course to becoming a global leader in this sector.”