New York: A broad coalition of business, including India's Mahindra Group, civil society and UN leaders, on Thursday issued a call to action for private companies to make their critical and necessary contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to limit the worst impacts of climate change.
In the lead-up to the UN Secretary-General's Climate Action Summit to be held on September 23 in New York, Chief Executive Officers are being challenged to set even more ambitious targets for their companies in line with the report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which made a compelling case for limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
The call-to-action comes in the form of an open letter addressed to business leaders and signed by Lise Kingo and more than 20 leaders, including Mara Fernanda Espinosa Garces, President of the UN General Assembly, Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, Jayathma Wickramanayake, the UN Secretary-General's Envoy on Youth, and Paul Polman, former CEO of Unilever.
"We need concrete, realistic plans by 2020 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45 per cent over the next decade, and to net zero by 2050," said Ambassador Luis Alfonso de Alba, UN Special Envoy for the 2019 Climate Action Summit and one of the co-signatories to the letter.
"Climate change requires an unprecedented effort from all sectors of society and business leadership demonstrated by setting science-based targets at 1.5 degrees Celsius will send strong market signals as we look to identify the scalable and replicable solutions needed to secure a world where no one is left behind."
"We have less than 11 years to fundamentally change our economies or we will face catastrophic consequences," said Lise Kingo, CEO & Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, one of the member organizations of the science Based Targets initiative.