By choosing to embrace climate change as an opportunity, bold and progressive corporates around the globe are future-proofing their business models and establishing themselves as leaders. But much like in business, success in communicating corporate climate action does not happen by chance: only well-planned sustainability communications can unearth stories of shared value and inspire others to take action - and ultimately serve as the tipping point for business success.
While many valuable initiatives to catalyse climate action are already underway, the real question is more than just how business can complement government carbon mitigation commitments: it is about how the corporate sector can help to proactively address climate impacts and adaptation in such a rapidly changing world. So how are companies fulfilling their responsibilities and what is a ‘Corporate Climate Leader’?
When a solution to a given problem doesn’t lie in front of our eyes, it is easy to assume that no solution exists. The same applies to turning the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into a value-driving component of business operations. As a social enterprise focused on developing sustainable solutions, especially on climate change, there is hardly a project or mandate that does not relate to one or several of the SDGs. Turning the SDGs into a catalyser for better, climate-friendlier business should have been straightforward for South Pole Group. Far from it. Going from this intuitively obvious framework of targets to a strategy and practical approach did not come without some sweat and tears.
2016 was an extraordinary year for many of us. In June, the UK’s ‘Brexit’ vote sent shockwaves through the EU and rest of the Western world. In November, the UN climate conference that took place in Marrakech will most likely go down in history as the ‘Trump COP’. The former imperial city in Morocco had a ginger-coloured cloud hanging over it, which had nothing to do with the desert dust.
As corporate non-financial reporting becomes ever-more sophisticated, one blind spot remains: the supply chain. The majority of environmental impacts often lie further down in the supply chain, where robust data and reporting practices are often a challenge. On what topics can global brands engage with their suppliers to address this problem?