Presentations and meeting notes

Sharon Darcy, the Director of Sustainability First, gave this speech to the Competition Markets Authority on competition and consumer policy for a sustainable future. Her remarks were in a personal capacity because after 5 years she is stepping down as Director. In her speech she draws on her wider experience including as a former Council Member of Which?, Board member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority and Consumer Futures and Expert Panel member of the UK Regulators Network. 

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The new Defra Strategic Policy Statement (SPS) to Ofwat is to be welcomed.  But there are caveats.  The real test will be how much it changes things in practice. This briefing examines the SPS in more detail following a roundtable we held in February, and in particular the role of the aquatic environment, a new priority in this key document

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The Ukraine crisis is a humanitarian tragedy. Without distracting from this, it also has huge cross border implications for essential services we rely on; the UK energy, water and comms sectors are all impacted. In this pack, we aim to support senior decision makers in companies, but also regulators, to be bold and make the best decisions for sustainability and the public interest during this crisis.

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Why is a principles-based approach to change important in essential services, and how can principles be used to support the change in behaviours and cultures and embed a more sustainable approach in public utilities? In February 2022 we held a high-level roundtable exploring these two questions. This document summarises the key findings from the event, held under Chatham House Rules

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How can we ensure that Defra’s Strategic Policy Statement for Ofwat is translated into practice to support the ambitions of the 25 Year Environment Plan and a more sustainable water sector? We held a roundtable in February to discuss the topic and this document summarises some of the key themes raised during the event, held under Chatham House rules.

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Can technology be a force for good in delivering a fair climate future? explored the role of digital technology regarding the climate crisis and social justice. The event looked at both how technology can mobilise change and empower people to act, but also how to overcome any barriers and the risks of our increasing reliance on digital technologies. 

The ideas in this document are those of the panellists and video contributors –full credit must be attributed to them. Find out more about the speakers at the end of this summary.

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Sustainability First’s ‘Reconnecting’ exhibition at the Bermondsey Project Space, is about making connections to each other, nature and technology during the Covid-19 pandemic. The exhibition is split into two parts, featuring artworks by Hugo Lami, Sustainability First’s artist in residence at UK Power Networks (first floor), and shortlisted works from the Sustainability First Art Prize 2020 (ground floor and basement). Each showcase has a separate catalogue.


This catalogue covers a series of work by Hugo Lami, including an installation, photographs and sculptures that use e-waste to explore the interconnectedness of nature, technology, energy and life. By breaking down e-waste and putting it back together, Hugo’s work highlights the ways in which technology mimics nature and how the two are co-dependent.

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