Update from the Chair of the Chamber Climate Change Forum | July 2022

We now operate with a clear separation between the activities of the Business Sustainability Group which engages in supporting businesses to undertake whatever sustainability measures are practical now, regardless of Government policy; and the Climate Change Forum which focuses on more long term issues such as energy policy, regulation and government investment for a sustainable economy.

Date: Thursday 28 July 2022

We now operate with a clear separation between the activities of the Business Sustainability Group which engages in supporting businesses to undertake whatever sustainability measures are practical now, regardless of Government policy; and the Climate Change Forum which focuses on more long term issues such as energy policy, regulation and government investment for a sustainable economy.

Over the last few months the BSG chaired by Ralph Peake has been very active in engaging members and the wider community to establish the main concerns and goals of Manx businesses for the immediate future. The initial discovery phase of this project is now complete and we are looking forward to hearing the results, conclusions and action plan coming out of this.

The recent appointment of Clive Callister as an energy advisor to the climate change team is also very significant. Clive is a long standing member of the CCF and has significant international experience in the implementation of renewables, particularly wind energy, and will bring much needed expertise and practical experience to the team.

Recent and far reaching changes in the senior civil service have included the departure of Richard Lole as director of the climate change team and also a move of the team back from Cabinet Office to DEFFA. This has created an opportunity for us to reframe the way we work with government to be more open, action oriented and collaborative. This is in my view absolutely essential for the Island as a community to make the transition to a zero carbon economy at anything near the required pace.

In view of these changes Chamber has written to the relevant ministers requesting a review of the approach to working with our Forum as representatives of the business community and we have had an initial meeting with the DEFFA minister Claire Barber and Chair of the Climate Change Board, Daphne Cain supported by Aly Lewin. They have agreed to meet up with us to agree a more collaborative approach to working together and have requested that forum members review the latest climate change plan and economic strategy documents published this week to provide feedback when we meet with them (we will be looking for a meeting in September).

The Economic Strategy and Climate Change Plan do seem to be setting a far more ambitious and immediate set of targets which will provide new impetus for business to adapt and contribute. This will make it much easier for us to engage in concrete steps to ensure that these goals are achieved.

The next meeting will be used to reframe our goals in the light of these policies and also to discuss our preferred options for collaboration with the government team going forward.

Chris Gledhill, Chair of Chamber Climate Change Transformation Forum