Thursday, October 22, 2015

More US Corporate Climate Action in Support of COP21

Ahead of the forthcoming COP21 UN Climate Talks the white house has mobilized 68 companies to join the American Act on Climate Pledge. This is in addition to the July pledge in which 13 companies pledged emissions reductions of as much as 50 percent and a combined total of $140 billion in new low-carbon investments. These companies include Alcoa, Apple, Bank of America, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Cargill, Coca-Cola, General Motors, Goldman Sachs, Google, Microsoft, PepsiCo, UPS, Walmart.

The 68 new companies include: Autodesk, Best Buy, Bloomberg, CA Technologies, Dell, eBay, EMC, Facebook, GE, General Mills, HP, Ikea, Intel, Ikea, Kellogg’s, Levi Strauss & Co., L’Oreal, Mars, Nestle, Nike, PG&E, Qualcomm, Starbucks, Unilever and The Walt Disney Company.

All together 81 companies have made the pledge. These companies employ 9 million people and represent more than $3 trillion in annual revenue. They have agreed to both reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and increase their use of renewable energy. They will also focus on energy efficiency and low carbon investing.

By signing the pledge signatories agree to support a strong outcome at COP21, reduce emissions, increase low carbon investments, increase clean energy

Fourteen major companies based or with large-scale operations in the US have voiced strong support for a new global climate agreement at COP21. In a statement organized by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), the companies — Alcoa, Alstom, BHP Billiton, BP, Calpine, HP, Intel, Lafargeholcim, National Grid, PG&E, Rio Tinto, Schneider Electric, Shell and Siemens — called for “a more balanced and durable multilateral framework guiding and strengthening national efforts to address climate change.”

This is the first time an American administration has engaged the corporate sector to build support for COP21 and garner large scale cuts in emissions, alongside increases in renewable energy and low carbon technologies.

President Obama explained the pledge as follows:

"... I just want everybody to understand that American businesses want this to happen as well," he said. "What they do need is certainty. It’s going to be very hard for them to operate if they don’t know what the rules of the road are. And what we’re trying to do is make sure that everybody is on a fair playing field; everybody is going their part to make sure that we’re saving this planet."

“ We do believe that business and climate change can go hand-in-hand We do believe that business and climate change can go hand-in-hand,” said Todd Brady, Intel's global environmental director.

Brian Deese, senior adviser to President Obama said that climate action, "is increasingly the right business decision.”

“One of the things that is clear is that in both the U.S. and in countries across the world, the support and the backing of the business community is an important ingredient to getting to ambitious but also sustainable actions,” Deese said. “Making sure those voices are prominent as we move into the international talks is absolutely crucial.”

A group of large European energy companies recently signed a declaration of support for a new climate agreement at COP21. This pledge even included oil and gas industry giants BP and Shell.

White House Prompts Corporate Action on Climate Change 
Corporate Efforts to Reduce Greenhouse Gases
More Evidence for the Decoupling of the Economy and Emissions 
Emissions Reductions Efforts at GE, P&G, and Time Warner Cable
Businesses Practicing Sustainability are Leading the Way Forward
Governments are Pledging to Reduce GHGs Ahead of COP21

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