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Net zero business forum charts energy policy impacts for large businesses

Veronica Truman Veronica Truman Head of Content & Communications
30th June 2021

Last Thursday (24 June), we held our latest ‘Net zero business forum’ with attendees from large energy consumers, suppliers, TPIs and advisors. Every two months, the forum addresses the energy policy and regulatory challenges faced by businesses as they look to decarbonise their operations, with extra insight every month from our Energy: Net zero report.

Each forum, the team is joined by a Cornwall Insight expert to cover a headline issue with Research Partner Dan Atzori leading the latest agenda on the principles of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG). Some late reordering of the agenda was necessary by the team on that Thursday morning as they assimilated the very extensive advice offered by the Climate Change Committee (CCC) to Parliament on the year’s stuttering net zero progress by the government.

Dan’s discussion followed feedback from the April forum, where we had addressed the recently closed BEIS consultation on mandatory climate-related financial disclosures for large private organisations. Forum members had been keen to understand more on the drivers for the government’s plans setting out scenarios for the climate risks and opportunities they believe they face.

Dan outlined the development of ESG and its growing importance to investors through six Principles for Responsible Investment:

  • Incorporating ESG issues into investment analysis and decision-making processes.
  • Being active owners and incorporate ESG issues into our ownership policies and practices.
  • Seeking appropriate disclosure on ESG issues by the entities in which we invest.
  • Promoting acceptance and implementation of the Principles within the investment industry.
  • Working together to enhance our effectiveness in implementing the Principles.
  • Reporting on activities and progress towards implementing the Principles.

With many of the delegates from outside the finance sector, Dan was keen to stress the impact of these principles on investors and their willingness to fund different business models. Many investors were already considering them in the investments they were willing to fund or not fund. The risk of stranded investments is increasing, and this will affect not just investors in who they will fund but also the companies themselves seeking money to develop and grow.

About the ‘Net zero business forum

’The 'Net zero business forum' held every two months addresses the critical questions for larger businesses looking to decarbonise their power, heat, and transport. Our experts provide in-depth insight into the latest developments in the energy sector and how these will impact your business.

Benefits of attending

  • Learn about new and developing areas of energy decarbonisation.
  • Understand your roles and responsibilities in energy and carbon reporting and disclosure.
  • Opportunity to talk to our experts and discuss issues and concerns.

The forum is supported by Cornwall Insight's monthly insight report Energy: Net zero, which covers the critical policy and regulatory changes and market innovations in the UK and elsewhere that will help deliver net zero targets.

The latest recording of the forum is available here. For more details about this service or to talk about membership, please contact Robert Buckley r.buckley@cornwall-insight.com.

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