Chamber welcomes Government’s climate change initiatives | February 2020

Isle of Man Chamber of Commerce has welcomed the Government’s climate change initiatives

Date: Wednesday 26 February 2020

Isle of Man Chamber of Commerce has welcomed the Government’s climate change initiatives, the details of which were published in January in the form of two documents.

Chamber’s Zero Carbon Economy Group announced its initial response following the publication of the independent IMPACT (Isle of Man Programme for Achievement of Climate Targets) report on achieving carbon targets by distinguished climate scientist Professor James Curran, and Isle of Man Government’s Action Plan for Achieving Net Zero Emissions by 2050.

Chris Gledhill, Managing Director and co-founder of PDMS, is Chair of Chamber’s Zero Carbon Economy Group. He said: “As the Island’s biggest business network, Chamber is committed to working with Government to achieve the 2050 targets and will look to offer support, and add value, wherever possible. Chamber as whole, and the Zero Carbon Economy Group in particular, will be looking at the opportunities that can be created, and the impact that working towards the 2050 targets will have both in economic and social terms. These are significant steps towards ensuring that the Isle of Man continues to be in line with the recommendations made by the UN’s Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change.”

Mr Gledhill said the Action Plan and IMPACT report represented ‘a great starting point’ and a clear indication that Government recognises that there is a global climate change emergency. The Chamber group also welcomes Tynwald’s commitment to bring forward a Climate Change Bill, and the Council of Ministers’ stated aim to work with the Island’s business sector and industries to facilitate economic growth in the transition to a carbon neutral economy. “It is widely recognised by all leading authorities on climate change that governments, NGOs, and businesses must work together towards common goals,” said Mr Gledhill. “There is a broad consensus within the Island’s business community about the urgent need to take action to address the impact of climate change, and the Council of Minister’s aims show that Government and business on the Island share a common goal.”

All of these developments are good first steps, he added, but they must be followed up soon by actions. A major concern for the Zero Carbon Economy Group is the need for a sensible, fair and robust regulatory framework designed to incentivise public and private sector organisations to reduce their carbon footprint, discourage those that are reluctant to change, and encourage innovation. Equally, the impact of short-term suggested measures designed to achieve long-term aims on both industry and the island as a whole need to be carefully scrutinised and discussed further.

Initial discussions within the Group also indicate a desire to see evidence based models created that can be used to maximise the impact of Government policies.