Is UK cleantech innovation falling behind?
Friday 22nd June 2012
A recent blog by the Energy Saving Trust, discussing a report from WWF and Cleantech Group, has asked whether the UK is falling behind when it comes to cleantech innovation?
It is a pertinent question - as the blog rightly points out the transition to low carbon technologies is the most significant movement of our age. However, the WWF and Cleantech Group report, which assessed 38 countries over 15 indicators to rank their ability to produce and bring to market entrepreneurial, innovative start up companies, ranks the UK as firmly mid-table in many of these categories.
The implication is that the UK is not giving enough support to clean technology startups and that if this is not addressed we are in danger of being overtaken by countries who are able to grow major new low carbon businesses.
However, while greater financial support for the green sector would always be welcome, is innovation and growth really so stagnant in the UK?
Taking Navetas as an example, we are working with many key suppliers and organisations in the UK, bringing innovative new services to market - such as the EV charging service launched with British Gas this month. Investment from Sensus earlier in the year sees us expanding into the US energy market and we are also conducting projects in Asia.
I would not want to suggest that everything is perfect in the green sector in the UK; I certainly feel that more support from Government and banks would be useful, but important work is being done on these shores that will have global impact.
Indeed, it is vitally important to maintain the global perspective. Rather than judging these issues on a country-by-country basis, we must begin to think more globally. As well as governmental and financial support we must also engage in far greater sharing and collaboration across borders if we are to truly establish the new low carbon economy.
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