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Businesses appeal to Cameron for low carbon economy

A group of leading UK businesses has called on the Prime Minister to take decisive action on climate change and promote a low-carbon economy.

In an open letter in the Financial Times, addressed to David Cameron, 80 firms including Dong Energy, John Lewis, Tesco and Instagroup, seek a clear framework on investment in the low-carbon economy to boost the confidence of investors.

They also ask for ambitious carbon reduction targets and a robust global deal limiting temperature rises to below 2°C to be presented at the United Nations climate change conference in Paris in December.

In comments linked to the letter, the insulation installer InstaGroup urged Cameron to crack down on local authorities that fail to monitor carbon emissions.

Managing director David Robson said: “It’s a real shame many local authorities don’t have a clue about the true carbon footprint in their areas.”

“Though they’re required by law to measure and publish details, the act is not being properly enforced. How can we move forward toward a better, cleaner Britain, if we are not properly monitoring our CO2 emissions?”

Julia Groves, chief executive of the renewable energy crowdfunding platform Trillion Fund, said that with peer-to-peer lending, anyone can now invest in green technologies.

“Regular lenders and investors can sit alongside the Green Investment Bank, pension funds, private equity and banks as direct stakeholders in a clean future,” she said.

Meanwhile, Coca-Cola Enterprises has launched its tenth annual corporate responsibility and sustainability report which includes a pledge to boost the use of recycled PET or PET from renewable materials in its bottles to 40% by 2020.

The drinks company has recently patented a technology that allows for the production of PET from plant sugars. They said that they would continue to prioritise recycled PET and that the plant derived variant would only be used where it does not compete with food production.

The report also set out other 2020 aims including halving the carbon footprint of the business and a 10% reduction in the calorific content of drinks.

John F. Brock, Coca-Cola chief executive officer, said: “If we want to build a long-term sustainable business, there’s no room for complacency and these ambitious targets reflect our desire to take a lead in our industry when it comes to sustainability.”

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