Celebrating World Environment Day: FWB’s Sustainability Series

  • Thought Leadership
  • FWB Events

Today is World Environment Day, a perfect occasion to highlight the role of FWB’s sustainability series in driving thought-leadership and facilitating cross-sector dialogue on sustainability.

A key part of our offering to clients and our network is the access to our network, connecting leaders from multiple industries, and the ability to help influence, shape and drive the conversation on key topics businesses are facing.

Over the past year, our events have become crucial platforms where leaders from various industries come together to discuss and tackle pressing environmental issues. Here are some insights from our events and our ongoing efforts to shape the sustainability conversation:

Collaboration for Net Zero

Our roundtable event in partnership with Burness Paull, Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power, emphasised the need for collaboration between government, industry, and other stakeholders to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The discussions highlighted the importance of regulatory clarity, infrastructure upgrades, and streamlined planning processes. Effective collaboration and a coherent industrial strategy are essential to attracting investment and accelerating the transition to renewable energy.

The Complexities of the Energy Transition

During our latest Executive Women in Leadership debate, Dr Valentina Kretzschmar, Vice President of Consulting, Climate Risk and Strategy at Wood Mackenzie, discussed the immense scale of the Net Zero challenge. She stressed the importance of understanding geopolitical, macroeconomic, financial, and technological factors. Despite significant progress, the transition to clean energy needs to be more orderly and less turbulent. Valentina advocated for a rational approach to the energy transition, drawing on Norway’s success in balancing oil and gas resources with a low carbon footprint and investments in clean technologies.

The Importance of Innovation and Strategic Investment

In the same debate, Amanda Young, former Chief Sustainability Officer at abrdn plc emphasised the need for innovation and strategic investment to drive the energy transition. She highlighted importance of realistic target setting and supportive policies, and outlined six criteria for assessing a company’s climate credibility, emphasising emission targets, performance, green market penetration, climate governance, technology readiness, and policy environment.

Economic Resilience and Climate Considerations

Our Economic Roundtable dinner hosted by the Royal Bank of Scotland, featuring Senior Economist Katerina Lisenkova, focussed on the resilience of the UK economy amidst challenges like the pandemic and the energy crisis. Key points included the impact of inflation, labour market dynamics, and the importance of productivity improvements through AI investment and climate transition. The discussion also addressed the need for significant investment in infrastructure to support the UK’s net-zero targets and the importance of balanced economic policies.

Practical Actions to Unlock ESG Value

At our recent HR Scale-Up event, Nick and Emma Walford of Perigon Partners discussed practical actions to demystify ESG and unlock value. The conversation highlighted the shift from ESG to a broader focus on sustainability, encompassing global inequality, resource usage, and climate change. Key themes included value chain analysis and categorising sustainability initiatives into compliance, credibility, and impact. Emphasising long-term value creation over short-term goals is essential for successful sustainability strategies.

The Role of Education and Innovation

Across various events, it became clear that education and innovation are critical to advancing sustainability. There is a need for educational institutions to equip future financial leaders with the skills to consider the sustainability of business practices. Additionally, fostering innovation within industries can drive the development of new technologies and solutions that support the transition to a low-carbon economy.

FWB’s Commitment to Sustainability and Thought Leadership

At FWB, we are committed to leading the conversation on sustainability and driving meaningful change across multiple industries and sectors. Our efforts include:

  • Hosting Thought-Provoking Events: We continue to organise events that address critical sustainability issues, at an executive level, providing a platform for leaders to share insights and best practices.
  • Facilitating Cross-Sector Collaboration: By bringing together stakeholders from various stakeholders, we encourage collaboration and innovative solutions to environmental challenges.
  • Promoting Education and Skills Development: We work closely with educational institutions and industry partners to ensure that future leaders have the necessary skills to drive sustainable practices. Our annual Executive Leadership Programme and Non0Executive Leadership Programme, in partnership with the University of Edinburgh Business School are prime examples.

For more information about our events or to express interest in participating in future discussions around sustainability, please contact us at events@fwbltd.com. Join us in championing sustainability and environmental responsibility in the corporate world.

Together, let’s build a better, more sustainable future. Happy World Environment Day!

Laura McDonald

Events Lead

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Contact the team at FWB Park Brown to discuss your individual or company requirements, or to discover more about our specialist services.