Green Alliance summer reception 2017

On 13 July 2017, we hosted our summer reception, with introductory speeches by Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Rt Hon Michael Gove MP and our executive director, Shaun Spiers.


  1. Two hundred people from across government, businesses, NGOs and the media attended the reception, held in the fantastic surroundings of IET London.
  2. Shaun Spiers began the evening by giving an overview of Green Alliance's current projects, including work on low carbon energy, industrial strategy and new market approaches to restoring nature, as well as our work with the Greener UK coalition, focused on the risks and opportunities of Brexit.
  3. He expressed disappointment at the Repeal Bill (European Union Withdrawal Bill) published earlier in the day, and his concerns about the 'governance gap', ie who will monitor, implement and enforce laws as they come across from the EU to the UK, saying the bill "falls well short of expectations."
  4. Shaun Spiers introduced Michael Gove to the stage.
  5. “It really is very exciting to have an environment secretary who’s passionate about the cause but also committed to making a real difference.”
  6. The secretary of state spoke about his love for the environment whilst growing up in Scotland and emphasised that history was a warning on climate change.
  7. He also touched on opportunities to reshape environmental regulation and the role that Defra plays.
  8. "I have an opportunity to write a new chapter in the history of this country, to strengthen the protection and to enhance the quality of our environment."
  9. The speech was primarily focused on the unique challenges of replacing the common agricultural (CAP) and common fisheries policies. He stressed concern that CAP wasn't designed to put the environment first and said he wanted to align farming and environmental interests.
  10. "Any replacement for the CAP should ensure that farmers are rewarded for providing environmental goods."