Bosses of some of the world’s largest businesses call on US government to reconsider climate stance – and all the rest of this week’s global green business news
CEO Climate Dialogue issues public plea for US government to setp up climate action
A new grouping of corporate leaders has this week teamed up with leading NGOs to launch the latest attempt to revive climate policy measures at the US federal level.
The CEO Climate Dialogue went public this week with backing from 13 US and Global Fortune 500 corporations and four leading environmental nonprofit organisations. The group includes some of the most high profile and carbon intensive firms in the world, such as chemicals giants BASF, Dow, and Dupont, oil majors BP and Shell, and leading brands Unilever and Ford.
The group sets out a number of ‘guidiung principles’ for successful climate policy measures and urges the White House and Congress to “put in place a long-term federal policy as soon as possible”.
“The group aims to build bipartisan support for climate policies that will increase regulatory and business certainty, reduce climate risk, and spur investment and innovation needed to meet science-based emissions reduction targets,” it said.
The group faces an uphill struggle overcoming GOP opposition to climate action in Congress, but it quickly secured a supportive editorial in The Washington Post, which declared: “The Republican Party’s global-warming denial is becoming the fringe view it always deserved to be. It is not just environmentalists who want to move on climate change. Big corporations – even oil companies – are increasingly calling for action, too.”
The move also came as climate action was pushed further up the agenda in the expanding race to secure the Democrat’s nomination for next year’s election. Governor Jay Inslee this week published a 15,000 word document setting out a series of detailed policies designed to slash emissions and drive green job creation across the country.
Maserati pushes back against EV revolution
It turns out that at least one iconic auto brand did not get the memo. In the same week that Daimler announced a target to deliver a carbon neutral fleet by 2039, Maserati issued a bullish statement insisting it remains wedded to the internal combustion engine for the forseeable future.
“This is a brand that needs combustion engines,” Maserati’s North American chief, Al Gardner told Motor Trend in an interview that was quickly picked up by other motoring titles. “It needs that raw emotion,” he added.
ClientEarth to pursue world first Australian climate case
ClientEarth announced this week it is to lead a groundbreaking climate change case on behalf of a group of indigenous Australians from the Torres Strait region.
Eight Torres Strait Islanders are making a complaint against the Australian government, alleging its failure to act on climate change is violating their fundamental human rights.
One of the complaint authors and sixth-generation Warraber man, Kabay Tamu, said: “We’re currently seeing the effects of climate change on our islands daily, with rising seas, tidal surges, coastal erosion and inundation of our communities. We are seeing this effect on our land and on the social and emotional wellbeing of our communities who practice culture and traditions.”
Lead lawyer on the case Sophie Marjanac said climate change is “fundamentally a human rights issue”. “The predicted impacts of climate change in the Torres Strait, including the inundation of ancestral homelands, would be catastrophic for its people,” she said. “Australia’s continued failure to build infrastructure to protect the islands, and to take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, constitutes a clear violation of the islanders’ rights to culture, family and life.”
Corona toasts Bali single-use plastic ban
Beer brand Corona has this week launched a new campaign on the Indonesian island of Bali to support its recently announced ban on single use plastics.
The company announced that to help support the local NGOs who have been leading the charge against single-use plastic and as part of its commitment to the region where the annual Bali Pro-tected surf event takes place, it has teamed up with Parley and World Surf League to donate 20,000 reusable bags made from Ocean Plastic.
Limited edition bags are also being created on-site and will be sold in real-time at wslstore.com. The proceeds from each bag purchase will enable the donation of an additional three bags to the local community and the removal of more than 20 bottles worth of plastic.
“The La Casa platform is about collaboration and creativity to energize the fight against marine plastic pollution,” said Evan Ellman, Corona Better World Director. “In this case, Corona and our partners Parley and World Surf League, were inspired by the movement to ban single-use plastic in Bali and recognized an opportunity to support the transition.”
UN Secretary-General steps up calls for climate action
UN Secretary-General António Guterres used his visit to New Zealand this week to reiterate his calls for government’s to prioritise climate action and confirm bolder climate targets at his upcoming summit in New York in September. Speaking to TVNZ, he stressed the world was “not on track” to limiting global temperature rises to under 1.5C.
“Climate change is running faster than what we are … the last four years have been the hottest registered,” he was quoted as saying by Reuters.
Meanwhile, the UN’s climate change secretariat, UNFCCC, similarly called on government’s to come to the September summit with a bolder package of climate pledges that is in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
“Achieving this goal will require changes on an unprecedented scale at all levels, but it is still possible if we act now,” the group said. “With great urgency we call upon Member States to come to New York in September with concrete, realistic plans to enhance their nationally determined contributions by 2020 and in support to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.”