Philips, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Marks & Spencer are among 46 organizations to sign a statement asking the UK government to evaluate the risks of resource insecurity and climate change on economic growth.
The statement, organized by the Aldersgate Group, was sent with a letter to Dr. Steven Fries, chief economist at the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change. It says it supports the government chief economists’ proposal to commission an independent review into the impacts of resource insecurity and climate change, which the signatories — businesses, trade groups and NGOs — say is already having a material impact on economic growth. About a third of profit warnings issued by FTSE 350 companies in 2011 were attributed to rising resource prices, the statement says.
It also cites a 2011 European e-Infrastructure Forum survey that found that for 80 percent of senior manufacturing executives, limited access to raw materials was already a business risk and a threat to growth. For one in three companies it was their top risk.
Other business signatories include grocery chains the Co-operative and Asda, carpet manufacturer Interface, specialty chemicals company Johnson Matthey, European home improvement retailer Kingfisher and news service Sky. The UK Green Building Council, the World Wildlife Fund and Friends of the Earth have also signed the statement.
In the US, just weeks after President Barack Obama announced plans to address climate change, eight more businesses have signed the Climate Declaration, which calls on US policymakers to address climate change as an economic opportunity.
The new signatories include leaders in the IT, healthcare, media, hospitality and consumer products sectors: Akamai Technologies, AMD, Dignity Health, K2 Sports, Participant Media, the Saunders Hotel Group, and The Weather Company. In addition, Mars, Incorporated, one of the nation’s largest private companies, recently endorsed the Climate Declaration when it joined Ceres’ BICEP (Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy) network in June.
By signing the Climate Declaration, these business leaders join more than 600 other companies, including Starbucks, Nestle, Adidas and Patagonia.