Green Share Bill to unlock sustainable investment for co-ops gets second reading

The private members bill from Labour MP Anna McMorrin would allow member-owned businesses to raise green finance, delivering jobs and community benefit

A private members bill to unlock sustainable investment for co-ops, in order to boost local green jobs and skills has its second reading in Parliament on Friday.

The Green Share Bill, brought by Labour MP for Cardiff North, Anna McMorrin, would allow co-ops and member-owned businesses to raise green finance to invest in long-term sustainable projects to deliver on climate change.

The bill would place a duty on capital to be used to invest in environmentally sustainable projects. Ms McMorrin says it could see communities where co-operatives are rooted benefit from cheaper, greener energy; warmer, more energy efficient homes; more sustainable locally sourced food and secure much needed green jobs and skills.

Co-ops are already leading the way in green, sustainable business but current financial restrictions are hindering their innovation, she added. The Green Share Bill intends to remove these barriers and unlock the long-term investment that is needed to help meet climate and environmental targets.

Anna McMorrin

Ms McMorrin said: “My Green share Bill is an opportunity to use investment for the common good. The climate catastrophe is the greatest challenge of our generation and we need to make laws which enable our communities to rise to the challenge and effect real change from the ground up.

As we look to our post-Covid rebuild – innovative, sustainable projects which create green jobs and skills, generate cheaper, cleaner energy and a more sustainable living environment for all, rise to that challenge. My Bill would help bring that to fruition.

“I hope the UK government can support the principles of my bill and facilitate the urgent action that is needed at all levels to help tackle the climate crisis. Sustainability and climate action must be at the heart of what comes next.”

Anna McMorrin has been working with the co-operative industry to bring in the bill, which was introduced to Parliament in February. If the government backs the bill, the Green Share Bill would go to committee stage for further deliberation.