Independent group established to clamp down on greenwashing

An independent expert group has been established to advise on standards for green investment and clamp down on greenwashing.

The Green Technical Advisory Group (GTAG) will oversee the government’s implementation of a ‘Green Taxonomy’, a common framework that will set the parameters for investments that can be defined as environmentally sustainable.

The GTAG will help ensure that the Green Taxonomy tackles “unsubstantiated or exaggerated” claims that an investment is environmentally friendly, known as greenwashing.

It will also aim to make it easier for investors and consumers to understand a firm’s impact on the environment.

The government said that the improved data will help companies, investors and consumers make informed green choices, support investment in sustainable projects and improve efforts to tackle climate change.

The GTAG’s advise to the government will be non-binding.

The Green Finance Institute will chair the newly-formed group, with financial and business stakeholders, taxonomy and data experts, and green investment experts making up the rest of the group.

“We want investors and businesses to play their part in greening our economy and transitioning to net zero, so it’s crucial we have a clear common definition of what green means,” said Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen.

“A UK green taxonomy will provide better data on the environmental impact of firms, supporting investors, businesses and consumers to make green financial decisions and accelerating the transition to net zero.

“I look forward to receiving the advice of the expert GTAG as we put in place a rigorous taxonomy that works for the UK and sets a high standard globally.”

An Energy Working Group will also be established as part of the GTAG to provide advice on “key technologies”, such as hydrogen, carbon capture, utilisation and storage, and how to address nuclear power within the taxonomy.

Green Finance Institute executive director, Ingrid Holmes, added: “The GTAG will play a key role, advising government on implementing a robust, science-based taxonomy that is adapted to the specific needs of the UK context, and works for all stakeholders.

“We’re delighted to chair the GTAG, and to welcome all 18 members onboard, all of whom have a demonstrable interest and/or track record of being engaged on the issue of developing and using taxonomies, and the practicality of applying a taxonomy in a UK-specific context.”

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