In the opening speech of the Think07 conference Prince Charles declares "Doing nothing is not an option"

Prince Charles this morning opened the Think07 conference with a rallying cry for the construction and property industry to act now in the battle against climate change.

Prince Charles
Prince Charles: "doing nothing is not an option."

Addressing delegates via a live video link from St James’ Palace as part of the Prince of Wales’s May Day Business Summit, he said that “doing nothing is not an option.”

He urged the industry to cut carbon emissions for which they are directly responsible, and to work with suppliers and customers to help them cut carbon emissions. He added: “I am delighted to hear that the property and construction sectors are gathering today to discuss their response.”

The prince also called for developers and designers to adopt environmentally friendly materials and to work towards establishing sustainable communities. He also encouraged the use of traditional building materials in order to “relearn how to create liveable in human-scale communities.”

Prince Charles said that he knew some people were still sceptical about the signs of climate change, but that it was up to the industry to design products and services that would lead to a reduction in energy use.

“It cannot be business as usual we must invest seriously in the environment for continued economic development.”

Ian Coull, chief executive of development company SEGRO, also announced today that the firm has adopted a new costing for its schemes, including using only brownfield sites at accessible locations. British Land has also announced that it aims to be carbon neutral as early as the start of the finacial year 2007/8.

Think07 is taking place over three days at Excel in London’s Docklands. Former US President Al Gore is due to address delegates via a live video link up later this afternoon.