Companies must start fighting climate change

It has been more than a year since the global pandemic, and we are tired of lockdowns and restrictions. We want our lives to come back.

As infections and deaths persist globally, and Distribute life-saving vaccines And treatment is still grossly unfair, and we must make key choices about what normal life looks like-for ourselves and future generations.

Many of these options are on the table, as the UK has assumed global leadership as the host and convener of several events that will begin to shape the future of the pandemic-from G7 last month to late July The Global Education Summit (with Kenya) and the COP26 Climate Conference in November.

All of us must seize this opportunity. There are two possible paths in the future: a business-as-usual approach with serious flaws, or a global economy that protects people, the planet, and the natural systems that sustain us. Business as usual is no longer an option.

The water level in Beira, Mozambique, rose before Cyclone Elois in January © UNICEF/UN0403964/Franco

Even before Covid-19, the world was facing multiple crises. The pandemic will only magnify these by increasing inequality, threatening progress in the empowerment of women and girls, and increasing the risk of intergenerational poverty.

By the end of this century, we are still on the trajectory of global warming that is more than 3 degrees Celsius higher than the pre-industrial level. Unless we change course now, this existential threat will become our legacy to the children of the world — and their children.

The UN Global Compact is determined to help companies become a force to promote this change. Only by supporting a green and inclusive recovery can companies ensure their own survival and our collective future. We call on companies to set more ambitious and measurable goals for sustainable development and make them responsible for achieving these milestones.

A green recovery will require investment in training, education, and employment—especially in Africa, home to the largest young generation in history. By equipping the next generation with the 21st century skills they need, we can promote a new economic growth model centered on the environment and people.

Young people are leading the way in climate action, but activists such as Greta Thunberg should not Across the Atlantic To attract attention. Responsible leaders in the public and private sectors should support their cause.

Some business leaders have already begun to do this.Dozens of companies announced at the April Climate Leaders Summit that IIncrease investment in renewable energy, And others Decarbonization measures.

Whether these commitments will receive sufficient financial resources remains to be seen. Nonetheless, the announcement of the leaders’ summit has attracted widespread media attention to the key role of the private sector in turning the global economy from gray to green.

Thousands of companies commit to advance Paris Agreement, And more companies are working on it every week. In the United Nations Global Compact, we are working with chief financial officers of large companies to promote sustainability.

The CFO oversees more than US$14 trillion in corporate investment each year, most of which are invested in emerging markets. These executives are increasingly realizing that when they incorporate sustainability into their policies and practices, they will outperform companies that fail to do so.


Number of companies participating in a science-based goal initiative that promotes best practices for reducing carbon emissions

More than 900 companies joined Science-based goal initiative, To promote best practices for companies to reduce carbon emissions. More and more companies realize that reducing greenhouse gas emissions is a good investment. This is not only an environmental and humanitarian priority; it is a prerequisite for future economic progress.

UN Global Compact has joined Resilience competition, A campaign to help build the resilience of billions of people by 2030, focusing on those most affected by climate shocks.

Companies also contribute to this campaign through the Water Resilience Alliance to improve water supply for the 100 million people who need it most. Faced with water stress and other climate-related crises, children are always the most vulnerable group. Access to safe water is also important to help parents protect themselves and their children from Covid-19 and other diseases.

The failure of adult leadership forces children and young people — and all of us — to race against time. Mankind can no longer miss any opportunities. Now is the time to fast track climate solutions. We need to take bold action today to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Choosing between a livable planet and a healthy global economy is wrong. Taking climate action is the best way to build more resilient businesses, communities and societies.

Three of the ten guiding principles of the Global Compact involve environmental management. Our human rights principles are also intertwined with the climate agenda. The vulnerability of climate risk is directly related to income inequality. Unless we protect the rights of those who are most vulnerable to climate change, we can expect them to become more marginalized and their dissatisfaction will grow stronger. In addition to environmental protection, our prospects for global stability, peace and security are also at stake.

Let’s embark on this journey together. This is a journey out of the pandemic, which can take us into a safer and fairer world-a sustainable future, so that today’s young people and their children will be protected from the most catastrophic effects of climate change. Be able to play as the leader of tomorrow.

We know the way. For them, with patience, determination and deliberate speed, let’s get started.

© Single

Sanda Ojiambo is the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative aimed at achieving the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Read her full text on the UNICEF website, Here

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