8 months ago

Climate Action 2010-2011

We wish to thank...

We wish to thank... Ceres Ceres is a US-based network of investors, environmental organisations and other public interest groups working with companies and investors to address environmental and social challenges such as global climate change. Its mission is to integrate sustainability into company practices and the capital markets to protect the health of the planet and its people. Ceres directs the Investor Network on Climate Risk, a network of more than 60 institutional investors managing more than US$4 trillion in assets focused on the business impacts from climate change. The Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR) INCR is a network of institutional investors and financial institutions that promotes better understanding of the financial risks and investment opportunities posed by climate change. Much of INCR’s focus is aimed at improving corporate disclosure and governance practices on climate change. The four-year-old network, co-ordinated by Ceres, includes more than 60 investor members with collective assets totalling more than US$4 trillion. Sustainable Asset Management Risk (SAM) SAM was founded in 1995 as the world’s first asset management company for sustainability investments. Today, the company ranks among the globally leading managers of sustainability investments and theme based funds such as water, climate, clean energy, new materials and healthy living. Its clientele includes banks, insurance companies, pension funds, family offices and private clients. The Global Compact The Global Compact is the world’s largest voluntary corporate responsibility initiative offering a framework for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles. Its ‘Caring for Climate’ platform provides a framework for business leaders to advance practical solutions and help shape public policy as well as public attitudes on the issue of climate change. World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) The WBCSD is a CEO-led, global association of some 200 companies dealing exclusively with business and sustainable development. The WBCSD’s Energy and Climate project helps companies reduce the impact of their operations and prepare for a carbon-constrained future by exploring energy frameworks, sources, and technologies while also devising practical mechanisms, measurement tools, and market-based solutions. The World Climate Summit The World Climate Summit is the business and finance conference accelerating solutions to climate change during the UNFCCC COP 16, in Cancun, Mexico this December. This exclusive conference is a new open and collaborative platform where we will convene the most inspiring, influential and innovative business, finance, and government leaders to collaborate, implement, and scale solutions locally and globally over the next 10 years. OLADE OLADE, was created within the context of the international energy crisis of the early seventies with the signing of the Lima Agreement, the constituent instrument of the organisation, ratified by 26 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. OLADE is the political and technical-support organisation by means of which its member states undertake common efforts to achieve integration and development in the regional energy market. | 8 |

Foreword © iStockphoto Foreword Achim Steiner UN Under-Secretary General and UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director In advance of the UN climate convention meeting here in Cancun, UNEP convened well over 20 leading climate modelling centres and research institutes in order to assess how far the world has moved towards keeping a global, 21st century temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius. The findings are both cause for optimism and for concern: if all nations pledges are met in full and supported by sufficient climate financing for example, then it is possible that around 60 per cent of what is needed up to 2020 could be delivered. This would leave a gap of around five Gigatonnes (Gt) of CO 2 equivalent that must be bridged if emissions are to peak and then start falling sometime in the next ten years. Five Gt represents around five times the current emissions of international aviation and shipping combined or is equal to the global road transport emissions from cars, buses and trucks in 2005. Without any action at all, it is likely that a business-asusual scenario would see emissions rise to an average of around 56 Gt of CO 2 equivalent by 2020. The report also underlines the complexity of the calculations; the importance of the rules underpinning the implementation of the pledges and thus the central role of the negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Indeed, if only the lowest ambition pledges are implemented, and if no clear rules are set in the negotiations, emissions could be around 53 Gt of CO 2 equivalent in 2020 – that’s not that different from business as usual. In this case global emissions would not fall, but may continue to rise with the possibility of temperature increases of well beyond 2 degrees Celsius, becoming a far more likely reality, and efforts to avoid such a potential catastrophe becoming too expensive to contemplate. Clearly the rules set in the negotiations matter as much or almost as much as the pledges – rules covering, for example, the way Land Use and Land Use Change and Forests (LULUCF) is calculated in terms of emissions and credits; the way nations address countries’ surplus emissions and how they ensure ‘double counting’ of offsets is avoided. Thus Cancun is not just a staging post to the UN climate convention meeting in South Africa in 2011 but an important piece in the jigsaw puzzle en route to a new, global climate agreement. Cancun is also an opportunity to move forward on Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD and REDD+) by making this mechanism operational in advance of the UN’s International Year of Forests. Close to 20 per cent of current emissions are linked with deforestation: dramatically reducing the rate can also deliver multiple green economy benefits including improving water supplies; stabilising soils; recycling nutrients important for agriculture and reversing the rate of loss of biodiversity. Moving ahead on forests is also a key adaptation action, perhaps opening up opportunities for bringing other ecosystems into play. UNEP, with funding from the Global Environment Facility and in partnership with scientists, is currently part way through the Carbon Benefits Project. In China, Kenya, Niger and Nigeria, this is assessing how different land management regimes can contribute to not only sustainable agriculture and livelihoods, but also sequestration of carbon into soils and vegetation. It is a first step towards bringing other terrestrial ecosystems into carbon markets or part of new funding mechanisms. And what about marine ecosystems? By some estimates, salt marshes, mangroves and sea grasses are absorbing and locking away up to half of the world’s transport emissions. The overarching challenge must be to reduce CO 2 – the main greenhouse gas which can persist in the atmosphere for centuries. There are multiple opportunities here if governments can unleash the markets towards investments in, for example, renewable energies such as wind or solar, | 9 |