New Inquiry: The Green Economy

07 July 2011

The Committee will examine the concept of a green economy in the UK, what it should look like, and how it will help deliver sustainable development. The Committee also wishes to examine the barriers preventing the transition to a green economy and the Government’s role in tackling these and creating the conditions necessary for a green economy to thrive.

The Committee is interested in receiving written evidence that looks at the following themes of the inquiry:

  • The economic, social and environmental outcomes that a green economy should aim to deliver, and the appropriate tools and indicators to monitor progress towards such outcomes;
  • The nature of any barriers preventing the transition to a green economy;
  • The approach required to deliver a green economy, and the aspects of the current economic model that require development, eliminating and/or new approaches found. What tensions might there be between economic growth and the green economy? Would ‘greening’ the economy deliver the outcomes needed?;
  • The policy and institutional ‘framework’ required to create the right conditions for the green economy to thrive, and whether the Government’s forthcoming Green Economy Roadmap provides this framework. Does the Roadmap deliver a clear vision of the green economy?;
  • Priorities for action, including those sectors of the economy crucial for creating the conditions for a green economy;
  • The role of consumers, businesses, non-government organisations, and international bodies in delivering, and stimulating demand for, a green economy;
  • Whether any models that more closely resemble a green economy exist elsewhere that the UK should aspire to; and
  •  How the UK’s policies to deliver a green economy relate to actions needed to deliver a the global green economy (a theme of the June 2012 Rio Summit).

The Committee invites organisations and members of the public to submit written evidence, setting out their views on these issues. More wide ranging responses are also welcome. Submissions should ideally be sent to the Committee by Friday 26 August 2011, although later submissions may be accepted. Guidance on preparing submissions is set out below.

The Committee is also launching today a sister inquiry into preparations for the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development. The inquiry will deal with issues related to the Global green economy and the UK’s contribution. The terms of reference can be found at:

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is developing, with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department of Energy and Climate Change, a Roadmap to a Green Economy. This will aim to ‘clearly articulate the business and investment environment the government will provide to make possible the shift to a growing green economy’. The Roadmap is expected in late July 2011. In June 2011, the European Commission launched its Roadmap to a Green Economy , setting out the Commission's initial views on potential concrete outcomes for the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development.

For written submissions to the Committee, please note:

Each submission should ideally:

  • Begin with a short summary in bullet point form;
  • Have numbered paragraphs; and
  • Be in Word format with as little use of colour or logos as possible.

A copy of the submission should be sent by e-mail to and marked ‘Green Economy’. An additional paper copy should be sent to:

Clerk of the Committee, Environmental Audit Committee, House of Commons 7 Millbank, London SW1P 3JA

It would be helpful, for Data Protection purposes, if individuals submitting written evidence send their contact details separately in a covering letter. You should be aware that there may be circumstances in which the House of Commons will be required to communicate information to third parties on request, in order to comply with its obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Please supply a postal address so a copy of the Committee’s report can be sent to you upon publication.

 A guide for written submissions to Select Committees may be found on the parliamentary website at: (PDF PDF 1.25 MB)

Please also note that:

  • Material published elsewhere should not form the basis of a submission, but may be referred to within a proposed memorandum, in which case a hard copy of the published work should be included.
  • Memoranda submitted must be kept confidential until published by the Committee, unless publication by the person or organisation submitting it is specifically authorised.
  • Once submitted, evidence is the property of the Committee. The Committee normally, though not always, chooses to make public the written evidence it receives, by publishing it on the internet (where it will be searchable), by printing it or by making it available through the Parliamentary Archives. If there is any information you believe to be sensitive you should highlight it and explain what harm you believe would result from its disclosure. The Committee will take this into account in deciding whether to publish or further disclose the evidence.
  • Select Committees are unable to investigate individual cases.

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