Transport: the business opportunity of the net zero transition in the East of England

29 Sep 2022
1:00pm - 2:00pm

The Centre for Climate Engagement and Institute of Directors (IoD) East of England are collaborating on an event series throughout 2022, with quarterly events for non-executive directors, board members and business leaders in the East of England to accelerate business climate action in the region. This next event will focus on Transport and how businesses can reduce emissions from their operational and supply chain transport, as well as the opportunities that can arise from this. 

Results from a recent survey of IoD East of England members highlighted transport as a priority topic area for respondents in relation to the climate agenda.


This event aims to:

  1. Address the importance of decarbonising transport in the net-zero transition and the role the East of England region has to play, as well as the opportunities available to businesses in this sector.
  2. Highlight the decisions and action businesses must take to minimise greenhouse gas emissions from transport, both for organisations in the transport sector and those using transport in their operations and supply chains.
  3. Bring together non-executive directors (NEDs), board members and business leaders of organisations in the road transport sector in the East of England region to engage them in taking climate action throughout their business.

Audience: Board members and business leaders with businesses in the transport sector, and businesses using transport within their operations and supply chains.

Event Agenda

This in an online event, which will be a panel discussion followed by Q&A with audience.

13.00IoD and CCE Introduction
13.05Scene setter from Dan Thorp, Cambridge Ahead – why is addressing carbon emissions from transport important, both generally and in the region? What change do we need to see happen in the area and what is currently happening? Opportunities for businesses in the area arising through the government’s net-zero transition plans, e.g.public transportation networks and electric charging points, and how this fits in the national context.
13.15Presentation from 3 business case studies from East of England region.
There will be a presentation from each case study, including a range of small to large businesses both in the sector as well as businesses where transport plays  large role in their operations
13.25Moderated Panel Discussion
13.45Q&A Session
14.00Event Close from Moderator

Keynote speaker

Dan Thorp

Director of Policy and Programmes, Cambridge Ahead

Dan is Director of Policy and Programmes at Cambridge Ahead, supporting the organisation to building upon the success of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Independent Economic Review to promote the sustainable and inclusive growth of the Cambridge region. Research work at Cambridge ahead has spanned spatial planning, transport, and housing policy with particular research into new approaches that place quality of life at the heart of economic growth. Previously Dan worked at the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority as part of establishing the new Authority and focusing on place-making. This included developing the first Local Industrial Strategy for the region.  Prior to the Combined Authority Dan worked in a variety of economic development and policy roles at Cambridgeshire County Council and Improvement East.


Sam Keam

Co-founder & Chief Sustainability Officer, Zedify

Sam founded Brighton-based cargo bike logistics operator, Recharge Cargo, in 2013. He has a background in Environmental Geography and science policy and research. In 2018, Sam joined forces with Rob King to launch Zedify, with a shared mission to make deliveries in cities more sustainable at an impactful scale. Sam leads on sustainability strategy, impact and reporting at Zedify.

Sam Warren

Sustainability Manager, Woodland Group

Sam began his career working on the development and implementation of sustainability and low carbon projects at Chelmsford City Council. During his time there he managed a variety of projects ranging from energy reduction, operational efficiency, through to private sector engagement to encourage and support transitions to lower carbon business activities. More recently Sam has taken on the role of Sustainability Manager for Woodland Group. This position involves two main areas of focus, internal decarbonisation of fleet and business operations, and leading external discussions with clients on methods to decarbonise the transportation and distribution of their goods. Using in-depth reporting tools, Sam and the rest of the team at Woodland are able to measure and analyse current supply chain emissions, implement methods to decarbonise, and finally go through the process of ensuring carbon neutral shipments are available to clients where meeting net-zero targets are their ambition for today, not just the long term future. 

Sam Clarke
Chief Vehicle Officer, GridServe 

Sam Clarke is a life-long entrepreneur, EV evangelist, industry advisor and EV driver for nearly 20 years. He was a 2015 winner at the Great British Entrepreneurs Awards and in 2022 was voted #25 in the top 100 most influential people in Low Carbon Fleets and #5 in the Motor Transport Power Players for 2022. In 2009 he founded the all-electric last-mile logistics business Gnewt which subsequently won multiple awards nationally and globally and was acquired by John Menzies Plc in 2017. During his tenure, he created the UK’s largest fully electric commercial fleet, the largest privately-owned smart charging infrastructure and UK’s most advanced private V2G (Vehicle to Grid) network. The business was able to deliver over 10 million parcels in its first 10 years of trading, mainly in Central London, courtesy of a fully zero-emission fleet. Most recently, Sam has extended his role from Board advisor at GRIDSERVE to become their Chief Vehicle Officer. His role is to drive forward mass uptake of electric vehicles through the creation of a net zero EV leasing division, commercial charging infrastructure builds and support the nationwide network roll out of high-powered Electric Forecourts as well as the upgrade of the Electric Highway service station network. Sam is also a regular public speaker for the industry and has previously been invited to speak at the Transport Select Committee in Westminster and at the European Commission in Brussels. He is also a founding member and permanent sofa panelist for The EV Café Ltd. which is a widely recognised webinar series discussing all aspects of EV adoption.

Moderated by:

Harriet Harthan

Senior Knowledge Broker, Centre for Climate Engagement

Harriet has over 15 years’ experience working in climate, energy and sustainable development in a policy and business context at local, national and international level. Harriet leads the knowledge brokering team at the CCE, collaborating with academic and industry experts to understand key areas of climate research and how this can be translated for independent directors, business leaders and policymakers to accelerate climate action.

Introduction from the IoD:

Paul Durrant
IoD East of England Sustainability Ambassador

Paul is an independent sales specialist by day. Sustainability sits at the centre of all that he does, and this includes being a member of ORB (Organisation for Responsible Businesses). He is also one of only a few Gold STEM (Steps to Environmental Management) accredited businesses, through the LoCASE scheme. Furthermore, Paul gives back to the community by volunteering his time as vice chair and sustainability ambassador for IOD Essex, a school mentor for the social mobility charity Career Ready, an ambassador for Crimestoppers Essex and as a volunteer for St Luke’s Hospice in Basildon.