More than 100 high-level business leaders and investors met with leaders from Government, civil society and the United Nations in a show of resounding support and commitment to taking action on the Paris Climate Agreement at the COP 22/CMP 12: High-Level Meeting on Climate Change on 16 November in Marrakech, Morocco.
Hosted by the United Nations Global Compact, together with UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the secretariat of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the meeting was testament that responsible businesses across the world stand ready, willing and able to take climate action.
On the occasion of the High-Level Caring for Climate Meeting, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged companies to further increase their commitment to climate action. “Now it is time to turn words into deeds, to seize the opportunity before us for. We have no time to lose…that is why Marrakech is critical for strengthening the global climate action agenda, ensuring that we close the gap to meet the below 2° pathway. And that’s where business has an enormous role to play.”
Global Compact Network Kenya Country Coordinator Ms. Judy Njino said, Kenya has taken the lead in Africa by enacting a Climate Change Act and a National Adaptation Plan.The Act and the ratifying of the Paris agreement demonstrates the seriousness with which the country approaches climate change matters. Kenyan businesses are called upon to support Government efforts by pursuing comprehensive long-term strategies on energy efficiency and innovative low-carbon technologies within their processes, products and services throughout their value-chains.
Over the course of the High-Level Meeting, participants mapped out how they plan to accelerate climate action and increase low-carbon investments at the country level. Business representatives shared proposals on how the private sector can support and reinforce national climate priorities on mitigation and adaptation and highlighted the inextricable link between addressing climate change and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Commenting on the private sector’s role in addressing climate change, Lise Kingo, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, emphasized: “The climate movement is unstoppable. More and more companies are taking action, and seeing new opportunities for growth and innovation. But we will need companies everywhere to urgently rise to the challenge if we are to achieve our climate goals and the broader 2030 sustainable development agenda. That is why we will increasingly focus our efforts on supporting private sector climate action at the country level.”
Building on a decade of successfully engaging business on the international climate agenda, the UN Global Compact announced a new solutions platform Pathway to Low-Carbon & Resilient Development to mobilize the private sector to catalyze country-level action to meet the ambitions of the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. The platform will help companies scale up climate action that contributes to the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and national SDG plans. The Pathway to Low-Carbon & Resilient Development aims to set a new global standard of business leadership on climate while providing a space for companies to review, realign and recalibrate their corporate climate goals.