The defence industry plays an essential role in the security, prosperity and stability of the United Kingdom. Sustainability and national security are intertwined imperatives and the sector has a responsibility to play its part in realising a sustainable future.

The UK Defence ESG Charter is a collaborative effort by the UK’s defence sector that aims to drive ambition and action on sustainability. Promoting greater transparency, signatories to the Charter are dedicated to working together to meet commitments focused on climate transition and clean tech, societal impact and governance and ethics.

Contact us on for more information and to get involved.

UK Defence ESG Charter


A new framework for ESG standards

The UK Defence ESG Charter sets out clear commitments on behalf of the sector to enhance our ESG alignment.

Designed with organisations at every level of the supply chain in mind, learn more about how the Charter can support you with your ESG goals.

Read the ESG Charter (PDF)

Sustainability is not the responsibility of a single organisation, it is an effort that requires collective action. Launched 25 January 2024, the UK Defence ESG Charter outlines our sector’s firm commitment to building a stronger, fairer and more prosperous Britain.

The Charter’s inaugural signatories are ADS, Airbus, Babcock, BAE Systems, Leonardo, MBDA, QinetiQ, and Thales.

The Charter was launched with the support of Minister for Defence Procurement, James Cartilige MP, who stated: 

The invasion of Ukraine has highlighted in the starkest possible way the fragility of the most important social value – peace.

It’s more important than ever we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our partners to ensure they can continue protecting our way of life, alongside becoming more sustainable, reducing skills gaps and promoting a diverse workforce.

I urge more companies to sign up to the new UK Defence ESG Charter, which champions the vital role the sector plays in Britain’s security and prosperity.

The UK Defence ESG Charter focuses on three core areas:

Climate transition and clean technology

  • Decarbonising the sector’s supply chain
  • Contributing to clean and innovative technologies
  • Increasing supply chain resilience on critical mineral resources


  • Improving diversity, equality and inclusion at all levels
  • Helping address the STEM skills shortage in the UK
  • Strengthening and building meaningful partnerships

and ethics

  • Building greater cyber resilience
  • Sustaining comprehensive export control systems
  • Sustaining and growing sovereign capabilities

Access to finance for defence and security


Maintaining a resilient and thriving defence and security industrial base in the UK

To support both the financial services and defence sectors in navigating a complex regulatory landscape, ADS and UK Finance have collaborated on an Access to Finance Guide: aiming to ensure defence and security businesses have the tools and knowledge they need to innovate, scale and grow.

View the report