Author Archives: Matthew Spencer

About Matthew Spencer

Matthew has been director of Green Alliance since May 2010 and has 25 years experience of UK and international environmental issues. Prior to Green Alliance, Matthew was head of government affairs at the Carbon Trust; campaign director at Greenpeace UK and founder and chief executive of the renewable energy agency Regen SW, where he developed Wave Hub, the world’s first proving ground for wave energy farms. Follow on Twitter @Spencerthink

Seven things you should know about the EU and the environment

1. The EU is also an environment union The EU was established for economic reasons but has evolved into an environment union.  Threats like air pollution, climate change and habitat loss mean the UK and its neighbours have used the … Continue reading

Posted in Europe, Political Leadership | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

What does the Paris agreement mean for the UK?

Few political deals deserve to be called historic but, as President Obama tweeted a few minutes after the gavel came down in Paris, “this is huge”. It’s huge because it’s a global agreement which means every country has to review … Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Political Leadership | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Coherence is returning to UK energy policy

UK energy policy took two big steps forward today, after months of self-inflicted damage by a government unclear about what it wanted to achieve. There remain some big gaps, most notably on energy efficiency, onshore wind and solar, but we … Continue reading

Posted in Low carbon energy, Policy, Political Leadership | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The intern debate: four lessons from Green Alliance

The moral and practical dilemmas around internships are one of the hardest issues to manage if you run a charity. It has required soul searching, time and planning for Green Alliance to resolve them and through the process we’ve learnt … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

How to get UK energy and climate policy back on track

Sometimes it takes an outsider to reveal an uncomfortable truth. In his speech this week to Green Alliance’s Beyond Paris event, held in association with the CBI, Al Gore held up a mirror to the UK and it wasn’t pretty. … Continue reading

Posted in Climate change, Low carbon energy, Political Leadership, Sustainable Economy | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Big questions for a Greener Britain from Green Alliance

My biggest fear for the environment in this coming election is not that it won’t feature as a major issue. That may be a blessing given the quality of the debate so far. It’s that our next government won’t have … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Green economy, Greener Britain, Political Leadership, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Climate change does not have to be a partisan issue

Amidst the macho gun-slinging of the election campaign we’ve just seen something remarkable and unexpected:  an outbreak of wisdom and humility. The party leaders have put down their pistols and agreed to work together on climate change at home and … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Labour’s infrastructure plans won’t tackle the biggest barrier to delivery

This post appeared first on BusinessGreen. Heathrow was the elephant in the room at Tuesday’s Infrastructure Commission launch by Labour in Westminster. Most people there heard the shadow chancellor’s commitment to take early decisions on infrastructure as an indication that … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

What’s the role of the environment in business success?

This post first appeared on the CBI’s The Great Business Debate. The environment has been the bank that keeps on giving for business:  it is the source of materials, and the sink for waste products. The sheer size of our oceans … Continue reading

Posted in Circular Economy, Environment, Sustainable Business | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Unpicking the modernisation of the UK economy one step at a time

It generally pays to remain sanguine in the face of the ups and downs of the public policy debate, because it’s usually driven by short term concerns that don’t have a lasting effect in the real world. Last week, however, … Continue reading

Posted in Low carbon energy, Political Leadership, Sustainable Economy, Transport | Tagged , , | Leave a comment