As world leaders meet in New York this week to formally adopt the Global Goals for sustainable development, many businesses are announcing commitments to help build a low-carbon economy. Here are some highlights from Climate Week NYC 2015.
Microsoft, Sony, Adidas and Marks & Spencer are among the companies backing a UN initiative launched yesterday called Climate Neutral Now, which urges businesses, governments and individuals to measure, reduce and offset greenhouse gas emissions through an online climate credit purchasing site. The online platform also links to organizations that can provide businesses with climate footprint measurement and reduction advice and support.
Siemens said it aims to be the world’s first major industrial company to achieve a net-zero carbon footprint by 2030. The company plans to cut its CO2 emissions — which currently total about 2.2 million metric tons a year — in half by 2020. To achieve these goals, Siemens will invest some €100 million ($111 million) over the next three years to reduce the energy footprint of its production facilities and buildings.
The B Team leaders — CEOs of some of the world’s largest companies — called on governments and businesses to aim for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or before, building upon their February 2015 call to world leaders. Several global companies associated with the B Team are leading the way by announcing they will achieve “Net-Zero by 2050,” including Chinese construction company Broad Group, African telecommunications group Econet, Brazil cosmetics manufacturer Natura, the consumer goods company, Unilever and international investment group Virgin.
Life sciences and materials sciences company Royal DSM is the latest European business to join RE100 and make a public commitment to sourcing 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources of energy. RE100 a global initiative whose 27 company members have committed to 100 percent renewable power, led by the Climate Group in partnership with CDP. The Dutch company has set an interim target to source 50 percent of its electricity needs from renewable energy by 2025, and become “100 percent renewable” in future.
National Grid US yesterday hosted a free panel on carbon capture technology that discussed the latest innovations that economically remove CO2 directly from the atmosphere. It also addressed what to do with the CO2 once you have captured it.