(5 December 2012, Doha) – Reflecting the increased importance of the private sector to the climate negotiations and global sustainability, signatories of Caring for Climate (C4C), the UN’s climate action platform for business, met with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Doha today. Chaired by UN Environment Programme Executive Director Achim Steiner and featuring UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the UNFCCC Executive Secretary, the event offered a platform for business to interact with the international climate process.
At the meeting, held in connection with the 18th Conference of Parties (COP18) to the UNFCCC, Caring for Climate companies shared progress on the development and diffusion of low-carbon and climate-resilient solutions, and discussed ways to strengthen efforts in pursuit of international cooperation on climate action. The companies represented at the meeting were from a variety of industry sectors – financial services, beverages, industrials, electricity and multi-utilities, ICT, and insurance – with operations in developed and developing countries. The event provided a unique opportunity for business, Governments and the UN to exchange ideas and to develop a path forward on concrete ways to elevate existing efforts and to inspire more commitments and effective public-private partnerships in support of the global climate policy agenda.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres underscored the critical role of the private sector in addressing climate change and the need for Governments to adopt smart regulatory frameworks and incentives that reward business for responsible environmental behaviour and good climate performance. She also encouraged all companies to join the UN Global Compact in an effort to catalyse responsible action on-the-ground.
“The role of business is crucial in the fight against climate change. By showing leadership and taking significant action on the ground, businesses can create the political space that governments need to raise their respective levels of ambition to curb greenhouse gas emissions and create more climate-resilient societies, which in turn can boost business action,” said Ms. Figueres. “We need a virtuous cycle of top-down and bottom-up action and ambition, and governments can take heart notably in the many inspiring public-private partnerships that clearly show what is possible.”
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the technologies and innovations put forth by business and reiterated Caring for Climate’s role as a backbone to solving the global climate challenge.
“I encourage each of you to lead by example as a participant of the UN Global Compact. Other companies and Governments will have no choice but to follow,” said the UN Secretary-General.
Today’s meeting marks the second Conference of Parties interaction by C4C signatories following the UNFCCC’s agreement to join forces on Caring for Climate in September 2011.
About Caring for Climate
Launched by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2007, “Caring for Climate” is the UN Global Compact and UN Environment Programme’s initiative aimed at advancing the role of business in addressing climate change. It provides a framework for business leaders to advance practical solutions and help shape public policy as well as public attitudes. Chief executive officers who support the statement are prepared to set goals, develop and expand strategies and practices, and to publicly disclose emissions as part of their existing disclosure commitment within the UN Global Compact framework, that is, the Communication on Progress – Climate. Caring for Climate is endorsed by nearly 400 companies from 65 countries. www.caringforclimate.org
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