Ongoing Brexit fears continue to hit clean tech
A recent appeal, arguing that the UK needs a ‘green guarantee’ to protect its environment after Brexit, has been launched by Green Party MP Caroline Lucas.
More than 1,100 European Union environmental laws, ranging from air pollution limits to energy efficiency and wildlife protection, need to be transposed into UK law.
A report by Ms Lucas calls for the green guarantee to ensure the environment is protected, including a new Environmental Protection Act to re-establish protections that could be lost or rendered meaningless in the transfer of regulations into UK law.
Lucas, in common with many commentators, fears much greater probability of changes to UK environment laws outside the EU, more exposure to political cycles and a danger that investors in clean technology will be wary of potentially higher risks.
Her call comes as the UK government intends to pass legislation allowing it to trigger Article 50 by March 9, the Times reported.
Prime Minister Theresa May had said she would formally invoke the 2 year mechanism for Britain’s exit from the European Union by the end of March, but had declined to reveal an exact date.
Economic, societal and employment issues
More widely, analysis continues to rain down on the impacts now that Brexit appears inevitable.
The European Commission said on Monday that uncertainty about US policies, Brexit and elections in Germany and France would take their toll on the eurozone economy this year, writes Reuters.
It forecast eurozone economic growth to lose some speed this year before rebounding in 2018. It saw a sharp growth drop ahead in non-eurozone and EU-leaver Britain.
The British economy will nearly halve its expansion by 2018, the European Union executive said in a broad series of economic forecasts.
Meanwhile, The Guardian reports that UK employers are increasingly struggling to fill jobs in shops, factories and hospitals according to a new report that suggests the shortfall may be down to fewer EU migrants seeking work in the UK in the wake of the Brexit vote.
And, Jean-Claude Juncker has said he doesn’t think the rest of Europe will stay united over the course of Brexit talks.
The President of the European Commission said he thinks Britain will divide the EU’s remaining 27 member states, by making different promises to each country during the Brexit process.
He added that Britain would not be allowed to pursue external trade deals whilst still in the bloc. The uncertain ground makes for testing times; no one truly knows yet what Brexit means or where it is going.
Plainly, the best thing the buildings efficiency sector can do is set agreements with EU customers early where possible.
Plus, lobbying for the best Brexit possible is another key task. And firms must seek assurance that UK standards on energy efficiency will catalyse and grow the sustainable buildings sector, rather than harming