Some sort of exit from the EU now looks certain, says Martin Wright. But Michael Gove’s moves to safeguard bees and tackle plastics gave comfort to environmentalists this year

Brexit is a bad idea. That, at least, is the overwhelming view of all involved in sustainable business – campaigners and CEOs alike. With very few exceptions – take a bow, Michael Liebreich of Bloomberg New Energy – they campaigned to remain, and little since the referendum has changed their opinion.

Over the past year reservations over the likely impact of Brexit were exacerbated by growing uncertainty over just what type of Brexit door we’re headed for. Barely a year before chucking out time, there is still a vast cloud of unknowing as to what lies on the other side. And if there’s one thing business loathes more than bad news, it’s uncertainty.

The government has been dragged, kicking and screaming every step of the way, to address air quality. What happens when they don't have that pressure?

So, what have we learnt over the past year? First, some sort of a Brexit is virtually certain. It might be delayed – it might even, at some point in the future, be reversed – but for now, leave we will. Beyond that, we can probably rule out predictions pointing to extremes on either side. On the one hand, there’s little chance of...

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Bloomberg New Energy  Michael Gove  Powering past coal alliance  single-use plastics tax  bees  Geely  Orsted 

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