STOCKHOLM (AP) — As governments bicker over who should do what to slow the pace of global warming, the U.N.’s climate chief is increasingly looking to business leaders to show the way forward to a low-carbon future.
Christiana Figueres told The Associated Press on Tuesday that her efforts to reach out to high-profile executives from companies such as Coca-Cola, Unilever and Virgin Group represent “a deeper recognition of the fact that the private sector can contribute in a decisive way.”
Since the start of 2012, the Costa Rican head of the U.N. climate agency has met corporate leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos and on a cruise to Antarctica organized by Nobel Peace Prize laureate and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore‘s Climate Reality Project.
“I’m hoping to accelerate what I call the push and pull process,” Figueres told AP in a phone interview from her agency’s secretariat in Bonn, Germany.
Governments act as a pull factor by shaping the policies that promote green technology and help renewable energy sources like solar and wind power compete with the fossil fuels that scientists say contribute to global warming through the release of greenhouse gases.
“But the companies, particularly these very, very high-powered companies that … have the ear of many of the decision-makers and the opinion leaders of different countries, they can act as a push factor,” Figueres said.
She mentioned Walmart, Coca-Cola and Unilever as examples of companies that have “looked at their own production and up and down their value chain” for ways to reduce their carbon footprints.
- UN climate chief turns to CEOs for action (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- UN climate chief turns to CEOs for action (seattlepi.com)
- Amid Bickering Governments, UN Climate Chief Turns To Business Leaders (huffingtonpost.com)