Sustainability Leaders Forum: Climate Emergency, Transitions, and the Challenge for our Profession

This IEMA Fellows event saw presentations from a range of speakers. Natalie Bennett, former leader of the Green Party, gave the keynote remarks, considering how public interest and school strikes have been influential in recent political developments and offering a perspective on ‘fear narratives’ versus more positive transition messaging.

Nick Molho, executive director of Aldersgate Group, extracted recommendations from the Group’s latest report to note that it is essential that technologies such as carbon capture and storage, hydrogen and biofuels are trialled at scale. In doing so, he reminded the audience that successful and unsuccessful trials are equally valuable for policymaking.

Jon Foot, head of environment for EDF Energy and Chair of the IEMA Climate Change and Energy Network, provided EDF Energy’s perspective on low-carbon generation, including the importance of skills development to support the transition to a net zero future. Jon noted how the switch to low-carbon electricity is revolutionising the industry, driving innovation out of coal mines and gas fields and towards low-carbon power plants, energy efficiency and smarter use of electricity.

IEMA policy and engagement lead Nick Blyth presented an overview of IEMA’s work on climate change and moderated a panel discussion. He also shared some of IEMA’s upcoming actions on climate change, including network initiatives, revising its policy statement, international standards developments, and helping transition organisations. Collaborations with other professions are a continuing theme, including an event with the British Psychological Society next month on climate change communications. If you have questions, or wish to contribute insights, please contact Nick at n.blyth@iema.net

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