According to new research, conducted by independent analyst firm Verdantix, large UK businesses will increase spending on energy, environment and sustainability initiatives in the next four year. The market sizing and forecasting study, which analyses spending by 421 firms with UK revenues greater than £750 million, estimates that expenditure will grow at an average of 16 percent a year between 2012 and 2015.

Verdantix’s UK Sustainable Business Spending 2010-15 report predicts that growth in sustainable business spending in 2012 will be as high as 12 percent, which is 20 times faster than the forecasted growth of the UK economy, which stands at 0.6 percent.

Susan Clarke, Verdantix Analyst and author of the new report, said: “The UK’s sustainable business market is continuing to grow at a healthy rate because firms have aligned sustainability strategies with operational efficiency. Energy cost savings and more efficient use of natural resources now underpin sustainability investments – not philanthropic commitments to fight climate change.”

The Verdantix report finds that growing areas of spend between 2010 and 2015 will be smart meters (23 percent), electric vehicles (22 percent), on-site renewable energy (22 percent), product stewardship (21 percent) and sustainable solution marketing (21 percent).

Rodolphe d’Arjuzon, Global Head of Research at Verdantix, said: “Compared to our original forecast in 2009, growth in spending by large UK firms on energy, environment and sustainability has already slipped back by 18 months. The picture is likely much worse in the public sector. Over the next three years strategic energy management will be the hottest market as firms seek to cut energy expenses by between 5 percent and 20 percent with access to new integrated energy services propositions.”

Verdantix forecast for UK sustainable business spending from 2010 to 2015 can be seen in the table below:








Low Carbon Transport & Emissions Management







Strategic Energy Management







Human Capital







Sustainability Innovation







Environmental Performance







Strategy, Risk & Brand