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COMPANIES TAKE LEADERSHIP ROLE TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGE

By finding the right framework, encouraging ambitious targets and commercial incentives, while helping companies put emissions-cutting strategies into practice, the Institute fosters corporations’ low-carbon strategies.

The focus on achieving a global climate agreement in Paris gave international businesses an opportunity to demonstrate leadership on climate change. The Institute’s approach aims to turn ideas into action by encouraging the world’s top companies to accelerate the shift to low-carbon growth. WRI’s Business Center, with its Climate and Energy teams, offer tools, policy advice and guidance to help companies reduce greenhouse gas emissions while reaping economic benefits.

WRI led development of the Guide for Responsible Corporate Engagement in Climate Policy, together with the UN Global Compact and six other organizations, which lays out a clear and consistent framework for companies to advance climate policy. So far, 119 firms have committed to take the actions it outlines.

WRI believes it is not enough for companies to set emissions-reduction targets; these targets and goals must be consistent with what science says is needed to avoid catastrophic climate change. WRI, in a partnership with CDP and WWF, created Science Based Targets, which shows how companies can align their carbon-cutting strategies to stay within a 2 degree C trajectory. The leading climate business coalition, We Mean Business, adopted this approach. By December 2015, 114 major firms had committed to set science based targets; 10 had set targets that fully meet the standards.

To complement these efforts, WRI was lead author of a new Executive Guide to Carbon Pricing Leadership, offering recommendations on how companies can put in place internal carbon prices to incentivize the shift to low-carbon energy. With proper incentives in place, companies and other actors can shift to renewable energy more quickly and efficiently.

The Corporate Renewable Energy Buyers Principles, led by WRI in partnership with WWF, brings together major companies—including Amazon, Ikea and Walmart—that are committed to investing in renewable power. With 51 signatories and counting, the group works with utilities and their commissions to integrate lower-carbon energy into business strategy.

“We take WRI’s research and analysis and craft practical advice for companies on what they should do—and we then help them do it.”

Kevin Moss

Global Director, WRI Business Center