Transformative Business Leadership for a 1.5˚C Future
Date: 23 September 2019
Location: UN Headquarters, South Dining Room & Private Dining Rooms 6, 7, 8
Criteria: Invitation only (CEO and C-Suite Executive of UN Global Compact Participant level)
As the future of our planet hinges on today’s response to climate threat, evidence suggests that business leadership will be one of the most important factors in achieving the United Nations climate agenda and ultimately, in delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In this time of great uncertainty, what does it take to be a leading company in the fight against climate change? As trends in the SDGs continue to inform and influence business strategy, how have CEO attitudes towards sustainability shifted in recent years?
Taking place in the context of the Secretary-General's Climate Action Summit and as the precursor to both the Private Sector Forum and the Executive Lunch, this event allows executives and sustainability experts another opportunity to:
• take a deep dive into practical business solutions for climate action,
• hear directly from the CEOs of leading global companies who have committed to working towards the Global Goals to enhance business strategy,
• network with fellow business leaders and
• actively participate in the conversation.
The morning programme will begin with a networking breakfast followed by three inter-related panel discussions shaped around exploring motivations, activities and shifts in corporate culture that are influencing the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The panels will also feature key insights from the UN Global Compact-Accenture CEO Study and will highlight the importance and impact of the recently launched Business Ambition for 1.5˚C campaign.
Panel 1 | Insights from the CEO Study: A Call for Business Leadership on Climate and Gender (10:15 – 11:00)
This panel discussion will feature insights from the world’s business leaders who will present their corporate sustainability journeys, describing how they became empowered to adapt business strategy to key developments in the SDGs. The panel will also analyze the findings of the UN Global Compact-Accenture CEO Study which traces the development of corporate motivations in engaging with environmental, social and governance issues in core business. This year’s report features in-depth analyses of how trends in climate change and gender equality are informing business decisions as well as other developments that are affecting the integration of the 2030 Agenda into corporate decision-making practices.
Panel 2 | Business Ambition for 1.5˚C (11:00 – 11:30)
Recently launched by the UN Global Compact and partners, the Business Ambition for 1.5˚C campaign hopes to create a tipping point in collective climate action by mobilizing companies to commit to setting climate targets aligned with limiting global temperature rise and reaching net-zero emissions by 2050. In this panel, early signers of the new campaign will share their first-hand experiences of taking the first step towards climate transformative commitments as well as implementable, scalable and replicable business solutions for committing your company to a 1.5 ˚C target. Overall, the discussion will highlight the importance and success of the campaign as well as the business benefits of science-based climate action.
Panel 3 | Business Action for Resilient Communities and Economies (11:30 – 12:00)
The impacts of a changing climate are already being felt — warming oceans, water variability and increasing incidences of drought, flooding, snow melt and climate-related diseases are already negatively affecting business and society. In the face of climate crisis, companies will play a critical role in the implementation of responsible adaptation measures that will ensure both the sustainability of business and the resilience of local communities in the long term. This panel will explore how corporate adaptation and resilience measures can contribute considerable to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda, focusing on resilient water systems and a just transition for both urban and rural communities.