Suffolk: Going green makes sense for business

POLITICIANS, business leaders, and local authorities got together in the Palace of Westminster yesterday to explain how the region is becoming a green talisman for the rest of the country.

The New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership launched its “Leading the Way” green economy pathfinder manifesto with a special reception hosted by Lord Deben, the former Suffolk Coastal MP John Gummer.

To give the launch government backing he was joined by Business minister and North Norfolk Liberal Democrat MP Norman Lamb – his ministerial duties include developing the green economy.

Mr Lamb said: “The message is that going green is something that can be a real benefit for business. If you adopt an environmentally-friendly approach you are likely to save money, certainly in the long term and with energy prices on the increase quite possibly in the short term as well.”

He said some businesses had thrived as the green economy expanded – in his own constituency communities like Wells Next the Sea had been transformed.

Lord Deben, who served as both Minister of Agriculture and Environment Secretary under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, said he had always been concerned about green issues.

He said: “One of the problems we have in this country is that we do not have enough family businesses with a real long-term vision. Adnams is one such business and they have seen the long-term benefits of environmentally-friendly developments.

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“However speaking to them, it has become clear that the environmental benefits have kicked in much earlier than was expected because the price of energy has increased so fast.

“Benefits of adopting a green agenda are becoming very clear so I would urge business to consider this.”

The manifesto was drawn up by a group of business leaders, academics, environmental specialists, and public sector officials – all chaired by Mark Pendlington of Anglian Water.

In his notes at the start of the manifesto, he makes it clear that this region should show the way for the rest of the country as the green economy expands in the future.

He says: “The local economy is fit and healthy enough to help lead the way to recovery for UK plc – central to which is the transition to a green economy.”