It is critical that there is a strong conservative voice arguing for policies that can cost-effectively safeguard the environment and address the challenges of climate change. 

There is a strong tradition of green conservatism and in her speech to Conservative Party Conference in 1988, Margaret Thatcher highlighted this important aspect of conservatism:

“It’s we Conservatives who are not merely friends of the Earth – we are its guardians and trustees for generations to come. The core of Tory philosophy and for the case for protecting the environment are the same. No generation has a freehold on this earth. All we have is a life tenancy – with a full repairing lease. This Government intends to meet the terms of that lease in full."

This research theme is developing policies and political narratives on the environment, energy, and climate change. Our three core themes are as follows:

  • Future of energy
  • Natural environment
  • Sustainability and international development

The objectives of the research theme are:

  • Building concern for and awareness of environmental challenges among the conservative movement
  • Advocating market-based, cost-effective solutions to climate change and policies that support sustainable, long-term economic growth
  • Protecting and enhancing the local natural environment
  • Utilising the UK’s international development budget and moral leadership to champion sustainability internationally
  • Improving UK environmental regulation as it evolves as a result of the UK leaving the European Union 

Lord Michael Howard
Former Leader of the Conservative Party


Zac Goldsmith MP


Lord Gregory Barker
Former Climate Change Minister


Rebecca Pow MP


John Penrose MP

Laura Sandys
CEO, Challenging Ideas


James Heappey MP


Antoinette Sandbach MP


Professor Sir Roger Scruton


Simon Clarke MP

About the Advisory Board

Members of the Advisory Board provide intellectual and political advice to all of the outputs of the 'energy and environment' research theme through regular meetings and peer reviewing our papers.

Meet the team

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Sam Hall
Head of Research, Bright Blue

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Eamonn Ives
Researcher, Bright Blue

Ryan Shorthouse
Director, Bright Blue

Ben Caldecott
Senior Associate Fellow, Bright Blue


Philip Box
Researcher, Bright Blue




Partners have provided intellectual and/or financial contributions to this research theme. However, partners do not necessarily endorse all of Bright Blue's analysis and recommendations. Bright Blue has complete editorial control over all the outputs from this research theme.


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