Co-Founder of vocL
What would you like to see in the spring budget that would help business most with responsible green growth?
Assistant Manager – M&A, Grant Thornton UK LLP
I think (whilst highly unlikely!) it would be brilliant to see tax relief for entrepreneurs who run business which rank highly on ESG criteria. The issue with this is that we currently do not have a universal, definable set of criteria. I would like to see a focus on creating that set of criteria and then our government (through tax relief) and business (through more affordable lending) can increase willingness to invest in green, sustainable, inclusive companies.
Ethics & Sustainability / John Lewis Partnership
I believe that the best pathway to a growing and resilient economy is to invest in net zero. Heating our homes and buildings accounts for about a quarter of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions, so I’d like to see more investment in renewable energy and insulation. I also support calls to align stamp duty to the energy performance of homes. Conversely, I think the government can do even more to properly tax the soaring profits of fossil fuel giants.
Digital Transformation Director, Crystal Doors
I would like to see the spring budget allocate more support for manufacturers to be able to better understand their energy consumption. Especially SME manufacturers who don’t have extensive resources for energy management projects. But with low-cost sensors, so much data can be gained from a factory and its machines that can be used to optimise energy usage in production. I strongly believe it is important to begin with monitoring. This data can then be used firstly to consume less, and secondarily to understand how to effectively invest in green energy solutions such as solar.
Managing Director of B2B at the Timpson Group
Many businesses are working on some great ESG initiatives. However, it does sometimes feel more stick than carrot when it comes to how the government encourages private sector to do more. It would be great to see some more targeted incentives for businesses to encourage them to invest and grow responsibly.
Partner, Shakespeare Martineau LLP / AMPA
Tax incentives for businesses that invest in sustainability initiatives – such as tax breaks on environmentally friendly technologies, hitting key green milestones (such as carbon neutrality/negativity) and/or water saving projects. This would encourage businesses to re prioritise their green agenda.
Global Net Zero Programme Director, Atkins (SNC-Lavalin group)
US IRA means the stakes are high. UK needs to prioritise where we have genuine leadership and invest. For me, that means accelerating FID on Sizewell, industrial CCS hubs, offshore wind and set new high watermark standards in civil infra – like Lower Thames. Take innovative financing, like CFDs, into new markets, e.g. domestic retrofit and ensure the key enabling transmission and distribution infra is funded. Then set up a non-political body that empowers the experts to plan the whole system for the long term.
Digital Transformations Consultant
Would be great to see a detailed strategy around and funding for equipping the next generation with the skills needed to power green growth in the decades to come.