Posted: 01 Mar. 2023 4 min.

What’s slowing down the green transition?

Emne: Economics

A Geelmuyden Kiese and Deloitte joint report shows 10 factors stopping the sustainability revolution – and how we can start to overcome them

The climate crisis is everybody’s business. 
We’re all shareholders in Planet Earth. And we can’t hedge or short our investment – there’s no Planet B. This is why Deloitte, in collaboration with Geelmuyden Kiese (GK), has produced the UnSustainability Report.

To move forward, we need to know what is holding us back…
and this report does that, outlining ten concrete factors slowing the green transition in Denmark. The report might make uncomfortable reading. But the best plans, targets, and goals will amount to nothing if we don’t have the courage to recognise and then tackle the things which are holding us back. The ten factors which our research and analysis showed are limiting our collective implementation of the green transition span consumers, business, legislation, and the public sector:

  1. Baffling bureaucracy is slowing down the green transition 
  2. Our care for the environment isn’t stopping us purchasing additional cars
  3. Inefficient publicly-owned buildings are leaking heat 
  4. Labour shortages are making it harder to meet our targets
  5. Dysfunctional taxation stops low quality agricultural land from being turned into solar farms
  6. Our consumption of electronics is making things worse...
  7. as is the amount of food we end up throwing in the bin
  8. Politicians aren’t providing the legislative frameworks for new technology to be adopted
  9. NIMBYism is stopping the spread of renewable energy infrastructure
  10. And, without a spatial plan, we won’t be able to utilise Denmark’s landmass to its best potential

In other words, all of us have something to learn from this report. We’ve made great strides – but to get to where we want to be, we need to understand, analyse, and overcome these factors. To that end, GK and Deloitte have come together to produce reports for Denmark, Norway, and Sweden – each containing 10 factors holding back the green transition in each of these nations.

Combining data and dedication: Deloitte’s support for sustainability
Both of us were proud to represent Deloitte at the Danish launch event, along with Mikkel Lotzfeldt, Head of Sustainability at GK.

Promoting sustainability is a key part of the work we do – and this report represents an important milestone. Great progress has been made. But to get to where we want to, we also need to know what the barriers are – and how to overcome them. That is precisely what The UnSustainability Report does.

This is why Deloitte not only was present for the launch of this report, but why Deloitte Economics had been on hand to analyse data and provide context to the findings. It was important for both of us that Deloitte Economics helped play a role – utilising our knowledge and competencies in this way is a practical manifestation of Deloitte’s mission to make an impact that matters. By highlighting the cost of some of our self-imposed barriers to the green transition, we can lead a fact-based discussion: recognising the role of economic incentives; demonstrating how much there is to be gained by getting past the factors slowing down society’s sustainable turn.

With launches in three geographies – Denmark, Norway, and Sweden – and the accompanying 30 factors, there is now a significant evidence base to unlock the sustainable agenda we all want to see. We’re excited for businesses, governments, and society to engage with and respond to these findings.

Forfatter spotlight

Majbritt Skov

Majbritt Skov

Partner & Head of Deloitte Economics and ESG M&A

Spørg mig om: Samfundsøkonomi, økonomisk modellering og ESG i et kommercielt perspektiv Majbritt er partner i Deloitte og leder af Deloitte Economics. Hun har mere end 15 års erfaring med udarbejdelse af mikro- og makroøkonomiske analyser for både den private og offentlige sektor. Majbritt er en efterspurgt økonomisk rådgiver i strategiske beslutningsprocesser om optimering og effektivisering. Majbritt er ekspert i at beregne organisationers impact og kan sætte kroner og ører på bæredygtighed. Ydermere bistår hun virksomheder og investorer med at værdisætte ESG-relaterede risici og muligheder i både et kommercielt og samfundsøkonomisk perspektiv - blandt andet i relation til M&A. Besøg Majbritts blog her Ask me about: Socio-economic impact, economic modelling and ESG Majbritt is a partner in Deloitte and Head of Deloitte Economics. She has more than 15 years of experience with conducting micro and microeconomic analyses for both private and public sector clients. Majbritt is an experienced economic advisor in strategic decision-making processes focusing on optimization and effectivization. She is an expert in the valuation of non-market goods and supports companies and investors in assessing their impact and the value of sustainability and ESG-related risks and opportunities from both a commercial and societal perspective - in relation to M&A amongst others. Visit Majbritt's blog here

Bryan Dufour

Bryan Dufour

Vice President


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