Giving Compass’ Take:
· Eco-Business talks with Peter Bakker and Sunny Verghese, leaders of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, about sustainable capitalism and the potential for sustainable business to help fight climate change.
· How are businesses takes steps towards sustainability? What is sustainable capitalism? Could sustainable business be an answer to climate change?
The origins of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), an organisation of big business leaders designed to set the corporate world on the path to sustainability, were born in the wake of the Rio Earth Summit in 1992.
The council, formed in 1995 and whose members include multinational goliaths DuPont, Nestlé, BP, and Danone, works towards achieving sustainability ambitions that emerged after the Paris Agreement in 2015—for which the Rio Summit laid the foundations 23 years prior—the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
However, nearly three decades after Rio, carbon emissions show no signs of falling, global temperatures continue to set records, and the very existence of life on Earth is under threat as ecosystems wane under pressure from a human population expected to hit 8.6 billion by 2030—the target year for the SDGs, and the deadline the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has given humanity to decarbonise or face the worst consequences of climate change.
So can big business be trusted to help secure our future? Is there such a thing as sustainable capitalism? Or is it something of an oxymoron?
It is the responsibility of two men to convince the world otherwise.
One is Peter Bakker, who led global logistics giant TNT for a decade and is now president and chief executive of WBCSD. The other is Sunny Verghese, CEO of agribusiness giant Olam, who was appointed WBCSD’s chairman in 2018, following in the footsteps of the likes of the former BP boss Rodney Chase, Shell’s Sir Philip Watts and Unilever’s recently departed sustainable business pin-up Paul Polman.
Read the full article about sustainable business by Robin Hicks at Eco-Business.
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