Bosses of Bam, CBRE, Arup and British Land among signatories of letter urging prime minister to deliver on climate promises

More than 30 chief executives of firms working in the built environment sector have urged Liz Truss to push harder to achieve the government’s net zero targets.

Bosses from Bam, CBRE, Arup, Clarion, British Land and Atkins are among the signatories of a letter urging the new prime minister to “strengthen delivery mechanisms across the whole of government” for carbon cutting objectives.

The intervention comes less than two weeks after Truss announced plans to tackle the crisis of soaring energy bills with measures that included the issuing of more than 100 new licences for oil and gas exploration and a lifting of the ban on fracking.

Truss energy

Liz Truss announcing the government’s energy support package last week

A total of 116 chief executives from across the economy signed the letter, representing a combined 425,000 employees and a market capitalisation of £1.8 trillion.

The letter says: “As leading UK businesses and financial institutions from across the economy, we are committed to protecting and restoring nature and delivering a net zero economy in support of the UK’s targets. 

“For us to play our part, we need a robust plan from government on how to deliver these targets, both in the short and long term. 

“This will require delivery mechanisms to be strengthened across the whole of government, including in areas such as planning, building regulations and agriculture.”

The letter adds that a comprehensive package of support to make homes and businesses more energy efficient, and a strategy to decarbonise industry, could improve domestic energy security, shield the UK from global fuel price volatility and achieve net zero promises.

“Acting now to accelerate the energy transition, could both support UK households with the cost of living and deliver huge economic benefits, unlocking opportunities for the UK to be a leader in clean growth,” the letter argues.

Truss’s energy support package announced two weeks ago would see the government borrow an estimated £150bn – more than twice the cost of the covid-19 furlough scheme – to keep energy bills at around £2,500 for the average UK household.

The package will also see the temporary removal of green levies, namely taxes added to energy bills which are used to pay for sustainability initiatives such as renewable energy.

Support for businesses, which was outlined in more detail this morning, will consist of capping the wholesale price of electricity at £211 per MWh and gas at £75 per MWh, less than half the wholesale prices anticipated this winter.

The scheme will run for an initial six months, with a review after three months to help the government identify vulnerable users and determine how they should be supported when the scheme comes to an end in March.

Letter from business leaders to Liz Truss

UK businesses call on you to prioritise net zero and nature restoration to build a resilient UK economy

Dear Prime Minister,

Many congratulations on your appointment in this role.

As leading UK businesses and financial institutions from across the economy we are committed to protecting and restoring nature and delivering a net zero economy in support of the UK’s targets. For us to play our part, we need a robust plan from government on how to deliver these targets, both in the short and long term. This will require delivery mechanisms to be strengthened across the whole of government, including in areas such as planning, building regulations and agriculture.

As skyrocketing energy bills inflict considerable costs on businesses and push vulnerable households into poverty, we would like to see you continue to prioritise policies that will address this crisis, as part of a robust net zero strategy. The policies and market frameworks that will facilitate an accelerated rollout of low-cost clean energy, a comprehensive package of support to increase energy efficiency of homes and businesses, and a strategy to deliver industrial decarbonisation, could improve national energy security, shield the country from the volatile global fossil fuel prices, and enable the UK to deliver its world leading climate promises.

Acting now to accelerate the energy transition, could both support UK households with the cost of living and deliver huge economic benefits, unlocking opportunities for the UK to be a leader in clean growth. Industry experts predict this action could reduce yearly household energy bills in the UK by 7 per cent by 2025, rising to a 50 per cent reduction by 2035. And focussing investment on building and industry energy efficiency could yield a £46 billion return and create 215,000 new jobs over the same period.

At the same time, restoring nature through a comprehensive environmental improvement plan, a strong national adaptation plan, and setting ambitious long-term targets will help build the UK’s resilience and support the economy by reducing threats to food security and the economic and social damage of climate impacts. Official figures show that nature represents an asset of around £1.2 trillion in its value to the UK economy. The economic loss from flooding over winter in 2019/2020 was estimated to be £333 million, with this year’s long period of hot weather and resultant drought likely to have a similar economic impact.

Clearly, you take on your new post at a challenging time with many competing policy issues to resolve. However, we strongly believe that prioritising policies that accelerate the clean energy transition and create positive impact on nature will increase our resilience, spur investment to support economic growth, create jobs and level up. A recent paper for the World Economic Forum estimated that such policies globally would have the potential to create around $10 trillion of new business activity and hundreds of millions of jobs.

We hope you will not delay in continuing to take these necessary and important actions to deliver a better society, environment, and economy for all. As businesses, we are committed to support the delivery of the UK’s targets and stand ready to work with you and your government.


1. Jo Bacon, Managing Partner, Allies and Morrison LLP

2. John Boumphrey, UK Country Manager and Vice President, Amazon

3. Amanda Fisher, CEO, Amey

4. Gregory Borel, Managing Partner, Ampersand Partners

5. Peter Simpson, Chief Executive, Anglian Water Services Ltd.

6. Stuart McLachlan, CEO, Anthesis Group

7. David Partridge, Chairman Related Argent, Argent LLP

8. Nigel Tonks, Sustainable Development Director UKIMEA, Arup

9. Mike McNicholas, Managing Director Infrastructure UK & Europe, Atkins

10. Peter Herweck, CEO, AVEVA

11. Amanda Blanc, CEO, Aviva Plc

12. John Wilkinson, COO, BAM UK & Ireland

13. David Thomas, Chief Executive, Barratt Developments Plc

14. Sue Riddlestone OBE, Chief Executive, Bioregional

15. Steve Burr, Director, Black Architecture

16. Anne Marie Verstraeten, UK Country Head, BNP Paribas

17. Rachel Elwell, CEO, Border to Coast Pensions Partnership

18. Simon Carter, CEO, British Land

19. Chris Oglesby, CEO, Bruntwood

20. Carlos Jaureguizar, CEO, Bupa Global & UK

21. Sarah Prichard, UK Managing Director, Buro Happold

22. Martin Garratt, CEO, Cambridge Cleantech

23. Paul Margetts, UK Managing Director, Capgemini

24. Ian Hawksworth, Chief Executive, Capital & Counties Properties PLC

25. Ciaran Bird, Divisional President, Advisory Services, CEO UK & Ireland, CBRE

26. Iggy Bassi, Founder & CEO, Cervest

27. Kirstie Donnelly, CEO, City & Guilds

28. Alexander Uregian, MD, City Sanctuary Developments

29. Stephen O’Malley, Chief Executive, Civic Engineers

30. Dean Frost, Managing Director, Clade Engineering Systems Ltd

31. Clare Miller, Group Chief Executive, Clarion Housing Group

32. Stephen Moorhouse, General Manager, Great Britain, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners

33. Tim Attwood, Managing Director, Conisbee

34. Gilbert Lennox King, CEO, Construction Carbon

35. Dougie Sutherland, CEO, Cory Group

36. Steve Foots, Group Chief Executive, Croda International Plc.

37. Richard Hall, General Secretary, Danone UK & Ireland

38. David Morley, Founding Partner, David Morley Architects

39. Will Gardiner, Group CEO, Drax

40. Sir Nigel Knowles, CEO, DWF

41. Michael Lewis, CEO, E.ON

42. Stuart Lemmon, CEO, EcoAct UK, an Atos company

43. Gareth Griffiths, Chief Executive, Ecology Building Society

44. Colin Matthews, Non-Executive Chairman, EDF in the UK

45. Keith Chanter, CEO, EMCOR UK

46. James Brueton, CEO, EnviroBuild

47. Nick Dilworth, Chief Operating Officer, Esken

48. Paul Sutcliffe, Co-Founder and Executive Director, EVORA Global

49. Michael Pawlyn, Managing Director, Exploration Architecture Limited

50. Rich Speak, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Finance Earth

51. Andy Bord, CEO, Flood Re

52. Basil Demeroutis, Managing Partner, FORE Partnership

53. Simon Prichard, Senior Partner, Gerald Eve LLP

54. May Al-Karooni, CEO, Globechain

55. Toby Courtauld, Chief Executive, GPE

56. Ian Manocha, CEO, Gresham Technologies plc

57. James Raynor, CEO, Grosvenor Property UK

58. Tom Steel, Director, Heyne Tillett Steel

59. Simon Oldham, Joint Managing Director, Highland Spring Group

60. Simon Bell, Director, HLM Architects

61. Brian McConnell, Chief Executive Officer, Hydrock

62. David Kavanagh, Managing Director, Iceni Projects

63. Peter Connolly, CEO, igloo Regeneration Ltd

64. Peter Jelkeby, Country Retail Manager and Chief Sustainability Officer, UK and Ireland, IKEA UK and Ireland (IKEA Ltd.)

65. Jon Khoo, Head of Sustainability, Interface

66. Stacey Parrinder-Johnson, Chief Investment Officer, Investec Wealth & Investment Limited

67. Stephanie Hyde, Chief Executive, JLL UK

68. Liam Condon, CEO, Johnson Matthey plc

69. Mark Allan, Group Chief Executive, Landsec

70. Sir Nigel Wilson, Group CEO, Legal & General Group Plc.

71. Roy Bedlow, Chief Executive, Low Carbon

72. Hero Bennett, Sustainability Director, Partner, Max Fordham LLP

73. Robert Lambe, Managing Director, Melius Homes

74. Phil Bentley, CEO, Mitie

75. Sarah McMath, CEO, MOSL

76. Mark Everard, Executive Director of Property Services, MTVH

77. Fabio Barbosa, CEO, Natura &Co

78. Julia Szajdzicka, Managing Director, ND Metering Solutions

79. Stefano Agostini, CEO, Nestlé UK & Ireland

80. David Fairbrother, Managing Director, NSR Management

81. Mark Hoyland, Group Chief Executive, Orbit Group

82. Andy Briggs, Group CEO, Phoenix Group

83. Harry Hyman, CEO, Primary Health Properties plc

84. Andrew Mellor, Partner, PRP Group

85. Kevin Ellis, Chair and senior partner, PwC UK

86. Greg Laker, Director, Operations, QuestGates

87. Philippa Spence, UK Managing Director, Ramboll UK

88. Mary-Anne Bowring, CEO, Ringley Group

89. Stephen Barrett, Partner, RSHP

90. Zahra Bahrololoumi, CEO UK & Ireland, Salesforce

91. Saul Humphrey, Managing Partner, Saul D Humphrey LLP

92. Keith Anderson, Chief Executive, ScottishPower

93. Peter Duff, Chairperson, Shoosmiths LLP

94. Carl Ennis, Chief Executive Officer, Siemens GB&I

95. Stephen Rouatt, CEO, Signify UK&I

96. Kent Jackson, Partner, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

97. Dana Strong, Group CEO, Sky

98. Mark Smith, Chief Executive, Southern Co-op

99. Becky Valentine, Co-owner, Lead - Sustainability, Wellbeing & Building Health, Spenbeck

100. Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive, SSE plc

101. John Wright, ESG Director, Stride Treglown

102. John Scanlon, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK

103. Alistair Allison, Managing Partner, TFT

104. Sarah Bentley, Chief Executive Officer, Thames Water

105. Tom Druitt, CEO, The Big Lemon CIC

106. Shirine Khoury-Haq, Chief Executive Officer, The Co-operative Group

107. Andy Mitchell, CEO, Tideway

108. Bevis Watts, CEO, Triodos Bank UK

109. Paul Sheedy, CEO, Unifi ID Limited

110. Keith Riddle, Senior Vice President (Sales & Marketing), VELUX

111. Dave Worthington, Managing Director, Verco

112. Jakob Sigurdsson, Chief Executive Officer, VICTREX PLC

113. Tani Dulay, CEO, Woodbourne Group

114. Tim Wheeldon, Managing Director, Zeal hotels

115. Colin Heal, Director, Zeho Projects Ltd

116. Tim Bailey, CEO, Zurich Insurance UK Supporting business groups and networks:

117. Stephen Woodford, Chief Executive, Advertising Association

118. Nick Molho, Executive Director, Aldersgate Group

119. Alison Heppenstall, Executive Director, Climate Action for Associations

120. Adam Woodhall, CEO, Lawyers for Net Zero

121. Kinvara Carey, General Manager, Natural Source Waters Association

122. Dan McGrail, CEO, RenewableUK

123. Sandy Begbie CBE, CEO, Scottish Financial Enterprise

124. Jade Lewis, Chief Executive, Sustainable Energy Association

125. Halla Tómasdóttir, CEO, The B Team

126. Eliot Whittington, Director, UK Corporate Leaders Group

127. Julie Hirigoyen, Chief Executive, UK Green Building Council

128. María Mendiluce, CEO, We Mean Business Coalition