The Treasury has appointed a new group that will provide independent, non-binding advice to the government on developing and implementing standards for green investments.
The Green Technical Advisory Group (GTAG) will oversee the government’s delivery of a Green Taxonomy – a framework setting the bar for investments that can be defined as environmentally sustainable.
It aims to help clamp down on ‘greenwashing’ – i.e. unsubstantiated or exaggerated claims that an investment is environmentally friendly – and make it easier to understand how an organisation is impacting the environment.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak first announced the UK would implement a Green Taxonomy in November 2020, as part of wider plans to position the UK at the forefront of green finance, including issuing the UK’s first ever sovereign green bond later this year.
The Treasury believes the Green Taxonomy is an important step in the government’s efforts to boost investment in projects that accelerate the transition to a sustainable economy, create green jobs and support the UK”s environmental goals.
Chaired by the Green Finance Institute, GTAG will be made up of financial and business stakeholders, taxonomy and data experts and subject matter experts from academia, NGOs, the Environment Agency and the Committee on Climate Change.
The government will also establish an Energy Working Group as part of the GTAG to provide advice on key technologies such as hydrogen, carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) and how to address nuclear power in the taxonomy.
John Glen, Economic Secretary to the Treasury said: “We want investors and businesses to play their part in greening our economy and transitioning to net zero so it’s crucial we have a clear common definition of what green means.
“A UK green taxonomy will provide better data on the environmental impact of firms, supporting investors, businesses and consumers to make green financial decisions and accelerating the transition to net zero.
“I look forward to receiving the advice of the expert Green Technical Advisory Group as we put in place a rigorous taxonomy that works for the UK and sets a high standard globally.”