G20 leaders pressed on long term climate pact in Paris

November 13, 2015
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Co-Chairs of The B Team and signatories to the letter, Sir Richard Branson and Jochen Zeitz recognise the important role that business leaders have to play in making clear policy asks at this critical time for climate change/FILE
Co-Chairs of The B Team and signatories to the letter, Sir Richard Branson and Jochen Zeitz recognise the important role that business leaders have to play in making clear policy asks at this critical time for climate change/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 13 – Twenty-two influential leaders running some of the world’s largest companies have sent a letter to all Heads of State before this month’s G20 meeting, requesting their support for the inclusion of an actionable long-term goal in the climate agreement that is expected to be signed during the upcoming climate negotiations at COP21 in Paris.

Co-Chairs of The B Team and signatories to the letter, Sir Richard Branson and Jochen Zeitz recognise the important role that business leaders have to play in making clear policy asks at this critical time for climate change.

“Now it’s time for world leaders to take a stand and COP21 is that opportunity. Governments must come together and sign a powerful and legally binding global agreement that will tackle climate change and create a lasting impact.” Branson said.

The signatories recognise that climate action at the scale and pace needed will only happen, with the right level of ambition, at the very highest level. The letter states, “We believe that only Heads of State, acting together, can truly set a Long-Term Goal for the global economy. This is your time to lead in the negotiations by clarifying your vision.”

Business leaders signing the letter also recognize the importance of walking the talk. They have committed their own organisations to tangible actions that will shape the net-zero emissions economy. Ten of The B Team companies have made the bold long-term goal of aspiring to be “net-zero by 2050 companies”, and have also agreed to sign a total of 36 “We Mean Business” commitments. This represents a new way of doing business – one that will fast track massive reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

François-Henri Pinault, CEO of Kering and B Team Leader said: “Business, and society more broadly, relies on natural resources and ecosystem services to function. To be successful and to thrive we at Kering need to ensure that the natural systems upon which we depend also thrive. Aspiring to be a ‘Net-Zero by 2050’ company is consistent with this vision and our commitment to environmental and social sustainability.”

The signatories of the letter are not alone. They are part of a groundswell of over four hundred companies and investors that have made “We Mean Business” climate action commitments and are demonstrating that they want the future economy to be a net-zero emissions economy.

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