Corporate’s Feeling the Climate Change Heat

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +
  • The realities of climate change are getting harder for ignorant corporate’s not to notice.
  • They are feeling it on all fronts; from government, the financial sector, civil society and nature itself.
  • It is business unusual and only those corporate’s with an inclusive mindset will survive.

The corporate business sector is under pressure to do something about their carbon footprint and mitigate the risks of climate change. They are feeling it on all fronts; from government in the form of policy and carbon tax, from civil society in the form of protests, from the financial sector in form of selective finance and from nature itself in the form of extreme weather events.  

Cyclone Adai in Mozambique was not a regular cyclone; it has wreaked havoc through central Mozambique all the way up to Zimbabwe and part of Malawi. Read more. A recent prolonged drought in the Western Cape, South Africa almost brought the city of Cape Town to a standstill. Read more. It is these types of extreme weather events that climate change scientist predicted fifteen years ago and guess what, they are going to occur more regularly and on a bigger scale.

This is an emergency! According to Extinction Rebellion

The civil protests are also starting to become a regular occurrence and larger in scale. This past week a group called ‘Extinction Rebellion‘ took to the streets of London in a very organised and coordinated protest lasting the entire week. More than 950 people were arrested during the climate change protests and 40 people have been charged.

What is also hard for corporate’s to ignore is the protest action by school kids which was ignited by Greta Thunberg, a Swedish teenager who is credited with inspiring an international movement to fight climate change by staging a one-person protest outside the Swedish parliament in June last year.

Thunberg, who took part in the Extinction Rebellion protest in London last week, told the crowd “humanity is standing at a crossroads” and that protester “will never stop fighting for this planet”. She added: “For way too long the politicians and people in power have got away with not doing anything at all to fight the climate crisis and ecological crisis. But we will make sure they will not get away with it any longer.”

Inspired by Thunberg, school kids in South Africa and Kenya skipped class last month to march against climate inaction. Read more. The protest is increasing gathering support and momentum on social media like twitter platforms  #ClimateStrike and #GlobalStrikeForClimate.

The squeeze on corporates is also felt from local governments and metros that are increasingly announcing their commitment to clean energy and zero carbon emissions by set dates; 50% by 2030 and 100% by 2050. Read more

The banks are also in on the act by implementing a ‘selective finance’ policy to corporate’s. The World Bank and its affiliates have terminated their finance offering for any new build coal-fired power stations. The move has filtered down to local banks that are become increasingly selective when financing projects that have an adverse effect on climate change.  Just last week, Standard Bank in South Africa has withdrawn funding of any new IPP coal projects. Read more

The realities of climate change are getting harder for ignorant corporates not to notice.

The catastrophic effects of climate change are already visible around the world according to the Network for Greening the Financial Services (NGFS) who represents 18 central banks. “From blistering heatwaves in North America to typhoons in south-east Asia and droughts in Africa and Australia, no country or community is immune. These events damage infrastructure and private property, negatively affect health, decrease productivity and destroy wealth. And they are extremely costly: insured losses have risen five-fold in the past three decades. The enormous human and financial costs of climate change are having a devastating effect on our collective well being.”

As time goes by, the climate change heat on corporate’s is going to get hotter on all fronts. The obvious route is to show intent and tackle climate change issues that are directly affected by specific business activities. There is profit in using natural resources through the value chain. It is business unusual and only those corporate’s with an inclusive mindset will survive.

Author: Bryan Groenendaal


Leave A Reply

About Author

Green Building Africa promotes the need for net carbon zero buildings and cities in Africa. We are fiercely independent and encourage outlying thinkers to contribute to the #netcarbonzero movement. Climate change is upon us and now is the time to react in a more diverse and broader approach to sustainability in the built environment. We challenge architects, property developers, urban planners, renewable energy professionals and green building specialists. We also challenge the funding houses and regulators and the role they play in facilitating investment into green projects. Lastly, we explore and investigate new technology and real-time data to speed up the journey in realising a net carbon zero environment for our children.

Copyright Green Building Africa 2024.