The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has raised concerns about the UK’s standing in the global pursuit of green growth, citing a lack of a comprehensive green industrial strategy as a key factor.
According to the IPPR, this absence has left the UK trailing behind its international competitors in terms of harnessing the economic opportunities offered by the transition to a net zero carbon economy.
While several major global powers are actively supporting this transition with initiatives like the Inflation Reduction Act in the US and the EU’s Green Deal Industrial Plan, the recent rollback of certain net zero policies by UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has positioned the UK as an outlier, according to the IPPR’s report.
Furthermore, IPPR’s analysis indicates that public investment in the net zero economy in the UK is considered “inadequate.”
The research highlights that the UK’s commitments to invest in clean energy technologies are among the lowest within the G7 group of leading western economies.
The IPPR also underscores a noticeable absence of collaborative efforts involving public research, strategic investment and industry coordination, which are commonly observed in other nations.
A stark contrast emerges when comparing the contribution of green goods and services to the UK’s GDP with that of its European counterparts.
In the UK, this sector accounts for just 3.9% of GDP, while in the EU, the figure stands at 5.8% and in countries like Denmark and Sweden, it soars to approximately 11%.
In response to the report, a government spokesperson contends that the UK is already exceeding its targets and reducing emissions faster than any other G7 nation.
They highlight the £200 billion in low carbon investment since 2010 and the expectation of attracting a further £100 billion in private investment by 2030.
This investment is anticipated to support up to 480,000 skilled jobs across the country.
The government claims to have a clear strategy for UK manufacturing across various sectors, ensuring they have access to necessary funding, talent and infrastructure.