Top financial institutions push for greater climate disclosure during recent Paris Meeting

Paris Agreement, One Planet summit, financial institutions, Climate Action 100+, greenhouse gas emissions, climate-related threats, disclosure, Emmanuel Macron, emitting companies, Investors, stakeholders, Civil society organisations, Greenpeace, the Climate Action Network, WWF, Christian Aid and Oil Change International, Nature, CSE, Centre for Sustainability and Excellence, Nikos Avlonas, Forbes, Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Program, London 2018

Large companies, investors, national and local governments met in Paris on Tuesday, December 12, to celebrate the second anniversary of the signing of the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement. One promising sign to have emerged from this year’s One Planet summit came in the form of a pledge by 225 financial institutions to begin holding the world’s worst emitting companies to account. Investors from eight of the worlds’s top asset managers, pension funds, insurers and top sovereign wealth funds, as well as 20 globally systemic banks, backed the initiative. This will see them join the Climate Action 100+ to pressure companies to cut greenhouse gas emissions and improve disclosure and oversight of climate-related threats.

Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, arranged the One Planet conference to bring together governments, businesses and others to help find ways to meet the Paris goals. Civil society organisations, from nearly 60 countries, called on governments at the meeting to end subsidies and public finance for fossil fuels, and for the World Bank to end fossil fuel finance. The signatories included Greenpeace, the Climate Action Network, WWF, Christian Aid and Oil Change International.

Making it more difficult for companies to ignore the cost of their carbon footprint creates an exercise in transparency that will have long term consequences.

Meanwhile, according to a new study published in the scientific journal “Nature” worst-case climate change scenarios are likely to be most accurate. The report estimates that there is a 93% chance that global warming will exceed 4˚C by the end of this century under a business-as-usual scenario. That is double the target set in the Paris Climate Agreement to keep temperature rises below 2˚C above pre-industrial levels, with previous models only putting the likelihood of a 4˚C rise at 62%. The researchers said the different variations in global warming projected by models were largely due to how they simulate changes in clouds reflecting heat from the sun back to space.

CSE has identified the gap between international objectives and business practices that must be bridged and delivers practical tools to help professionals steer their organisation towards effectively contributing to climate change goals. Since 2005, CSE has provided integrated sustainability, corporate responsibility and carbon reduction strategic consulting from Europe, to the Middle East to North America. More than 5.000 corporate sustainability professionals in over 35 countries have been educated to increase Sustainability Performance in leading corporations and institutions across the financial, pharmaceutical, retail, food & beverage, chemical, education, oil & energy sectors.

CSE founder and president Nikos Avlonas was recently interviewed by Forbes The interview focused on CSE’s 2017 research, Sustainability Reporting Trends in North America 2017.  The research provides surprising insights on sustainability reporting and profitability for companies in the United States and Canada. Avlonas addressed the importance of Comprehensive Sustainability Strategies, global standards such as the GRI and the growing importance of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

CSE’s next presentation of the Global Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Program will be held in London, on March 1-2, 2018 and will provide all the latest updates and key concepts regarding trends and legislation on corporate sustainability, SDG’s, carbon emissions, GRI reporting guidelines, ways to measure the stakeholder engagement, case studies and best practices.

References

Alister Doyle, 2017, Global warming may be more severe than expected by 2100: study, Reuters, December 6

Fiona Harvey, 2017, Calls for greater fossil fuel divestment at anniversary of Paris climate deal, The Guardian, December 12

Ed Crooks, 2017, Investors to push highest-emitting companies to do more on climate, The Financial Times, December 12

Eoghan Macguire, 2017, Paris Agreement two years on: Who is taking the lead on climate change?, CNN, December 12

 

 

 

 

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