Friday, 05 June 2015 00:00

Business Leaders Call for Global Climate Deal, Net Zero Emissions

Written by International Institute for Sustainable Voting Rights

21 May 2015: During the Business & Climate Summit, a key event of Climate Week Paris, leaders of major businesses worldwide called on policymakers to leverage public and private finance to shift to a low-carbon economy, introduce carefully designed and predictable carbon pricing, and eliminate fossil-fuel subsidies. The Summit mobilized over 6.5 million companies from more than 130 countries through 25 business networks, who pledged to lead the global transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient economy.

With 2,000 international business leaders, policymakers and investors in attendance, the Summit showed, as stated by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, that "[b]usiness leaders are now in the vanguard of the movement to take climate action." Business leaders called for establishing an alliance between business and governments to integrate climate policies into the mainstream economy, particularly through enhanced public-private dialogues at the global and national levels.

Emphasizing that most businesses can benefit from a transition to a low-carbon economy, the leaders underscored the importance of predictable, robust and long-term policies to enable this transition. They added that businesses will be part of the solution, actively supporting governments that set clear frameworks to accelerate climate-friendly investment. They further encouraged governments to increase the ambition of their intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) to the anticipated 2015 global climate change agreement.

Business leaders said an ambitious global climate agreement should work with business to speed emissions reductions and build climate resilience, largely by sending a clear and credible signal that low-carbon policies will endure. They stressed that science calls for an emissions trajectory that peaks around 2020 and achieves net zero emissions by 2100. In addition, the Business & Climate Summit called on businesses to set their own science-based climate targets and take sustainable investment decisions.

The Business & Climate Summit, organized by a large coalition of partners, including the UN Global Compact and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), was established in response to Ban's call for a more active private sector role in decarbonization at the UN Climate Summit on 23 September 2014. The Business & Climate Summit marked the midway point between the UN Climate Summit and the Paris Climate Change Conference to be held in December 2015. Climate Week Paris is taking place from 18-22 May 2015 and featured various forums, roundtables and panels, as well as Climate Finance Day.

Link to original article from IISD

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