UK Trade and Investment
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UK's environmental sector urged to look overseas

UK's environmental sector urged to look overseas

UK TRADE AND INVESTMENT News Release issued by COI News Distribution Service. 7 November 2008

UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) has identified key markets for the UK's £25 billion a year environmental industries. The total world environmental goods and services sector is expected to grow by more than 30 per cent to US$688 billion by 2010 offering significant opportunities for UK companies.

The report, 'Market opportunities in environmental goods and services, renewable energy, carbon finance and Carbon Abatement Technologies' (CATS), confirmed Australia, Brazil, China, India, South Africa, Turkey and the USA as markets that could benefit from UK expertise.

Of the seven countries, the USA was recognised as the largest market for environmental goods and services in 2005, valued at an estimated US$ 241 billion. China was the second largest, valued at US$32 billion, followed closely by Australia (US$16 billion) and India (US$14 billion).

Andrew Cahn, UKTI Chief Executive said:

"In these tough times it is vital we look for where our expertise is needed and provide support for UK companies to seize these opportunities.

"Importantly, the UKTI report on overseas opportunities for environmental industries shows the global commitment to combating climate change can create jobs and give small businesses the chance to expand.

"Through UKTI, UK businesses can tap into these markets to help address environmental concerns, meet environmental regulations and establish infrastructure facilities."

Carried out by SQW Consulting, the report brings together information from a range of sources to provide a guide for UK companies. For each country, current and future opportunities are highlighted together with regulatory constraints and indications of where the UK is best placed to offer its expertise.

The report concluded that:

* Opportunities in most of the countries match UK strengths in water, wastewater, waste and asset management, energy market, environmental consultancy, generation technologies and carbon finance.

* Specific opportunities include low carbon energy generation capacity, renewable energy, and carbon finance in China, generation technologies in USA, environmental consultancy and waste management in Brazil, and water and waste water treatment in Turkey.

* In 2005, the highest consumer of renewable energy was China with 399 billion kilowatts, followed by USA (370 billion), Brazil (352 billion) and India (197 billion).

At least a tenth of the UK sector's annual turnover is through exports, representing a significant share of the world market, which was valued at US $515 billion in 2002 and is expected to grow to US $688 billion by 2010.

Andrew Cahn added:

"This report contributes to the broader UK Government objective of creating low carbon zones. As part of this commitment the UK is participating in the EU-China Summit on 1 December 2008 with EU member states to work with China as it moves to a low carbon economy.

"The summit is also an ideal opportunity to address ways in which we can accelerate the development and deployment of low carbon goods and technologies to global markets. "

The opportunities highlighted in the report are:

Country Key opportunities

Australia Current opportunities include: air pollution control, solid and hazardous waste management, wastewater and water treatment, environmental monitoring and advanced fossil/clean coal technology. Future opportunities are likely to lie in additional sectors such as cleaner technologies and carbon capture and storage (CCS), low-carbon transport fuels and renewable energy.

Brazil Current opportunities include: water provision, wastewater treatment and air pollution technology markets, low carbon transport fuels and renewable energy including hydroelectricity and wind, and carbon finance. Future opportunities are also likely in environmental consultancy and waste management.

China Current opportunities include: waste management, water and wastewater treatment, low-carbon energy generation capacity and renewable energy, and carbon finance. Future opportunities are likely to be presented across all sectors except land remediation.

India Current opportunities include: water and wastewater treatment, waste management (solid waste and hazardous waste), renewable energy and carbon finance - the same sectors are likely to present future opportunities.

South Africa There are limited opportunities at present. However, future opportunities are likely to be in waste and energy management, environmental consulting and water and wastewater treatment with some potential for carbon finance and renewable energies.

Turkey Current opportunities include: hazardous waste management, solid waste management, water and wastewater treatment, advanced conventional energy generation and renewable energy. There are opportunities in the future in air pollution control, cleaner technologies, generation technologies and asset management.

USA Current opportunities include: solid waste management, water utilities and wastewater treatment, air pollution abatement, cleaner technologies, low-carbon fuels and renewable energy. Future opportunities are likely to be in environmental monitoring, land remediation, CCS and generation technologies.

A full copy of the report can be downloaded from the UK Trade & Investment website at

Notes to Editors:

1. UK Trade & Investment is the UK Government's international business development organisation, supporting businesses seeking to establish in the UK and helping UK companies grow internationally. The services offered by UK Trade & Investment bring together a network of business sector specialists and support teams in British embassies and Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) posts all around the world, as well as key experts in government departments across the UK. UK Trade & Investment works with a wide range of partner organisations in the UK, including Regional Development Agencies and the Devolved Administrations, Business Links, Chambers of Commerce and trade associations. For more information, visit the web site at:

2. For latest press releases, visit the online newsroom at

3. For more press information contact Natasha Guerinoni from UK Trade & Investment on 020 7215 4218

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