During this year's international climate negotiations, the impressive leadership role of non-state actors, including businesses and financial institutions, became the centrepiece of many reports and news pieces from the 26th Conference of the Parties. The strong presence of business leaders and investors at COP26 in Glasgow has highlighted the great potential for positive impacts of corporate climate action. This is why some even referred to it at the business COP.
This year, World Climate Foundation significantly contributed to building up this momentum and fostering the creation of new markets by engaging businesses and investors for a net-zero and nature positive economy.
With our Roadmap to COP26, World Climate Foundation has convened business leaders throughout the year to gather insights on the key themes and topics set by the UK COP presidency.
Focusing on climate investments before 2030, public-private partnerships to create a net-zero economy, and inclusion of biodiversity protection in the climate agenda, we created impactful platforms for multi-sector stakeholders to build partnerships and strong ambition loops to foster climate and nature innovations and solutions on the sidelines of COP26.
Turning Climate Finance into Investments
World Climate Foundation catalysed and presented strong pledges and finance commitments from its partners during COP26. As a recent member of the Marrakech Partnership, we encouraged and highlighted new announcements from investors and businesses for tangible, short term climate action and finance. A group of globally leading asset managers, including Zurich Insurance, Asset Management One, MSCI, PGIM, Cathay Financial Holdings and AXA IM announced a range of commitments on achieving net-zero emissions by 2040 and 2050 using science-based targets to cut emission intensity in the shorter term.
The Climate Investment Coalition, of which World Climate Foundation is a founding partner, demonstrated the positive impact and concrete commitments that can come from putting ambition loops into action. On November 2, the Coalition announced a collective financial commitment of US$130 billion by Nordic and UK pension funds to be invested in clean energy and climate investments by 2030. This commitment was delivered jointly by Nordic governments and pension funds. As a part of this commitment, pension funds will also report annually on the progress of their climate investments. In 2022 and beyond, the Coalition will build on its growing momentum to mobilise new, ambitious climate finance commitments, including investors in the EU, UK, and US.
Heads of State and Government from all the Nordic countries were present at the announcement
Creating Public-Private Ambition Loops to Reach Climate Targets
World Climate Foundation convened public and private sector leaders who spurred ambitious climate commitments and action to reach 2030 targets and net-zero transitions in Glasgow. This took place during World Climate Summit - The Investment COP, one of the biggest business and investment forums at COP26. Here, thought leaders highlighted, that only if public and private sector stakeholders collaborate and engage in honest and open dialogue on what is yet to be achieved can we tackle the climate crisis. Further, it was emphasised that while it is crucial to achieve a rapid transition to a net-zero economy, a just transition is equally important.
World Climate Foundation encouraged corporate leaders and CEOs to pledge their own contributions for tangible, short term climate action to lead the fight against climate change. Business leaders contributed an ambitious series of commitments that set emission-reduction targets consistent with achieving a net-zero world by no later than 2050 - with some going even further in attaining carbon neutrality across their operations by 2030. Those businesses include ABB Electrification, O’right, Spirax-Sarco Engineering, Södra, High Speed 1, Capgemini, Neste, Novelis, Landsvirkjun and Sigma Lithium.
A record number of participants joined us both in-person at the Hilton Hotel in Glasgow and digitally
Making the Business Case for Nature-Positive Solutions
Nature was at the forefront of the climate negotiations this year. By launching its biodiversity initiative, World Biodiversity Summit, World Climate Foundation successfully contributed to making the business case for nature. By bringing together public and private stakeholders, we strengthened cross-sectoral collaboration and devised actionable methods on how to create the ambition loops necessary to accelerate finance for nature towards the required nature-based solutions.
It is crucial that governments systematically include biodiversity in national policies and also provide the necessary framework conditions that accelerate investments into nature. With the strong support of private sectors and thought leading businesses, we can turn the biodiversity crisis into an opportunity and ensure subsidies are working for nature rather than against it.
In Glasgow, World Climate Foundation already made the first step and collected a number of new, impactful commitments, including biodiversity restoration commitments by Fresh Del Monte, Stora Enso and O’right, emerging product development as an investment platform by Capital for Climate, a new environmental initiative by the creators of Ven, the Hub Culture and the launch of Rainforest Collective by Rainforest Partnership.
The inaugural World Biodiversity Summit convened public and private sector stakeholders in Glasgow
Thank you to all of our sponsors and partners for their contribution to our events! We look forward to further establishing cross-sector networks, delivering concrete action and collecting ambitious commitments on our 2022 roadmap towards COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh.