Twenty-eight companies with a total market capitalization of $1.3 trillion are stepping up to set a new level of climate ambition in response to a call-to-action campaign ahead of the UN Climate Action Summit on 23 September.
The companies have committed themselves to more ambitious climate targets aligned with limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and reaching net-zero emissions by no later than 2050.
First movers include Acciona, AstraZeneca, Banka BioLoo, BT, Dalmia Cement Ltd., Eco-Steel Africa Ltd., Enel, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Iberdrola, KLP, Levi Strauss & Co., Mahindra Group, Natura &Co, Novozymes, Royal DSM, SAP, Signify, Singtel, Telefonica, Telia, Unilever, Vodafone Group PLC and Zurich Insurance, among others, collectively representing over one million employees from 17 sectors and more than 16 countries.
Of the 28 companies, BT, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Levi Strauss & Co. and SAP already have 1.5°C-aligned reduction targets covering greenhouse gas emissions from their operations.
“Climate leadership has never been more important than it is right now, and it is inspiring to see so many diverse companies and brands boldly raising their ambitions,” said Lise Kingo, CEO and executive director of the UN Global Compact. “Leading companies are already proving that 1.5°C-compliant climate targets are possible, and I encourage all businesses to seize this opportunity to position themselves at the forefront of this movement and contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.”
The commitments of the 28 companies heed the most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which warned of catastrophic consequences should global warming exceed 1.5°C.
By sending strong market signals, these companies are showing governments that they need to urgently ramp up their national plans in line with the latest climate science.
“The UN Secretary-General has called on leaders to come to the Climate Action Summit in September with clear plans for major cuts to emissions on the pathway to a zero-net emissions economy by 2050,” said Ambassador Luis Alfonso de Alba, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Climate Action Summit. “It is very encouraging to see these climate leaders in the global business community taking action, both to help tackle the climate emergency and because taking climate action presents huge opportunities for early movers. By sending strong market signals, these companies are showing governments that they need to urgently ramp up their national plans in line with the latest climate science.”