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The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group

The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group (CLG)

2 November 2014: Business leaders state IPCC report is “required reading” for governments and companies

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) welcomed the release of the Synthesis Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC AR5). Philippe Joubert, Chair of the CLG said: “The findings of this report are required reading for government offices and boardrooms around the world.” He goes on to say that the scientific report reaffirms the scale of the climate change threat and that whilst many business are investing in a low carbon future “if we are to unlock the scale of change that we need, we must have a level of policy clarity equal to this scientific clarity.” This message is further reinforced by a statement from We Mean Business, a coalition of influential business organisations, co-founded by the CLG. The statement which is also released today states that “more than ever, business recognises that climate change is one of the greatest risks we face – and that tackling it is also one of our biggest economic opportunities”.

Read the CLG Press Release (pdf).

Read the We Mean Business Statement (pdf).

Our briefings condense the key findings of the IPCC’s AR5 report into clear, short summaries for relevant sectors.

24 October 2014: EU Climate and Energy package is a major step forward but weak on renewables and energy efficiency

The European Council has just agreed a new climate and energy deal that sets a binding domestic Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) target of “at least” 40% but which failed to agree ambitious targets for the share of energy from renewable sources and for energy efficiency. 

Read the press release (pdf) from The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group.

Read the letter (pdf).

24 October 2014: Leading Polish businesses commend Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz for not blocking the EU 2030 Climate and Energy Package

In a letter to Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) and members of the Polish Business & Science Climate Platform (led by the CLG) welcomed the EU agreement on the EU Energy and Climate package and commended Poland for its support of the deal. While recognizing that the deal represents a ‘major step forward’, they stressed that it did not far enough and the need to engage in further efforts to drive down emissions, encourage low carbon investment, and enhance energy security in Poland remained.

Members of the Platform and the CLG are committed to working together with Polish policymakers to help them implement the targets at national and local level. A first meeting with the Mayor of Warsaw is scheduled to be held on 2 December 2014, soon to be followed by other high-level events with policymakers in Brussels and Warsaw.

23 October 2014, CNBC video: Climate goals 'good for Europe': Kingfisher CEO

Sir Ian Cheshire, CEO of Kingfisher Plc and UK Chair of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group appeared live on CNBC to represent the Group’s call for an ambitious EU Climate and Energy package this week. He said "if we don’t have clarity of targets and commitment for transformation to new model of the economy then business can’t play its part".

21 October 2014: Leading businesses urge Europe to agree ambitious climate and energy policies this week

Members of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) are urging EU ministers to agree an ambitious package on climate change at the European Council meetings this week. The group supports a target of at least a 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in Europe, and 50% if other countries take comparable action. It also supports targets of at least 30% for renewables deployment and at least 30% for energy savings. The CLG is proud to deliver such an progressive position and note that it is the strongest stance taken by a group representing such a wide variety of multi-sectorial businesses. 

Read the press release (pdf).

Read the letter (pdf).

6 October 2014: Over 50 leading companies urge Europe to keep up ambition on climate

A group of 57 leading companies and business organisations representing more than 4.5 million employees worldwide, today urged EU leaders to agree a robust 2030 energy and climate policy framework and energy security strategy that is fully in line with Europe’s long- term climate objectives and that can help deliver a global climate change agreement.

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group is pleased to have been able to help secure support for the statement from businesses from a wide variety of sectors. The statement is being released during the informal Energy Council and in advance of the 23-24 October European Council and stresses that a timely decision by Heads of State and Government is critical.

Read the press release (pdf).

Read the statement (pdf). 

10 October 2014: CLG activities at UN Secretary General's Climate Summit, New York, 21–23 September

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) was actively involved in the UN Secretary General’s Climate Summit, and related activities, during Climate Week in New York recently. A significant number of world leaders attended the summit, including more than 100 Heads of State and Government. They were joined by more than 800 leaders from business, finance and civil society.

The summit was not a negotiating session and was organised to support the political momentum behind international agreement on climate change, rather than deliver a negotiated outcome. It successfully provided an international focal point to prompt the development of new initiatives and activities. The UN Secretary General has released a report summarising key announcements made as part of the summit.  

In the run up to the official summit there was a strong presence of additional activities including the New Climate Economy report, the NGO-organised “People’s Climate March” and the “Climate Week” discussions.

The summit successfully created a stronger sense of international progress towards the COP 21 summit, scheduled to take place in Paris at the end of 2015, where a new global agreement on climate change is due to be struck. However it is worth noting that there was little concrete progress towards the conditions needed to agree a global agreement on climate change: government finance pledges fell short of the UN’s target, and no significant new emissions reductions pledges were advanced.

CLG representatives attended the summit, and the CLG also convened three important side events.

I. Carbon Pricing Breakfast and Leadership Club

A breakfast meeting, jointly hosted by the World Bank, World Economic Forum and the We Mean Business coalition (of which the CLG is an active partner), was held for business leaders to discuss strategies around Carbon Pricing. Over 70 countries and more than 1,000 global businesses and other organisations have now committed support to a World Bank-led initiative to accelerate carbon pricing activities. As a longstanding leadership voice on this issue, the CLG has worked closely with the World Bank on this project. In particular, The Carbon Price Communiqué published by the CLG in 2012 provided the template for the World Bank’s Statement and the source of much of its strongest business support.

As a follow-up to the statement, the World Bank President Jim Yong Kim launched The Carbon Pricing Leadership Club, which will be facilitated by the World Bank Group, together with key partners, including the CLG. The Club will pursue four pillars of activity:

(1) To build from the Partnership for Market Readiness and other initiatives to create an inclusive group of government and business leaders that drives action on the carbon pricing agenda.
(2) Convene a high-level dialogue that brings together government and business leaders in a series of focused events through to October 2015;
(3) Promote government–business collaboration and action to accelerate carbon pricing in targeted regions; and
(4) Make action-focused policy recommendations on carbon pricing via a high-profile global website and communications campaign in September–October 2014.

II. Net Zero & Trillion Tonne Communiqué Launch

The latest business statement on climate change, The Trillion Tonne Communiqué, launched by the CLG earlier this year, has created a new benchmark for international leadership that other groups are quickly rallying behind. The Communiqué brings business voices together around the need for a transformation of the energy system and a global ‘net zero’ emissions target. Flowing from this, the CLG is facilitating a series of private conversations around the implications of decarbonisation for the fossil fuel industry and energy intensive sectors with key industry players.

At the Summit, the CLG, and member company Skanska, invited distinguished guests such as Christiana Figueres, UNFCCC, Rachel Kyte, World Bank, Tony de Blume, Foreign Minister, Marshall Islands, Amory Lovins, Rocky Mountain Institute and George Ferguson, Mayor, The City of Bristol, UK to the Empire State Building for a conversation on the implications of net zero emissions for city design. In addition to thoughtful presentations and conversation, the event caught the enthusiasm and buoyant nature of the week.

III. Climate Summit Breakfast debrief

The Corporate Leaders Group was also able to take advantage of its credibility and network to host an exclusive, high-level event, allowing senior representatives from business and government to debrief each other on the summit’s proceedings. Participants reflected on the summit’s outcomes and necessary steps for agreement in Paris. They agreed that the summit successfully brought forward new and noteworthy commitments from business and governments, but that the momentum must now be built on concrete action and delivery. The participants agreed that important outcomes of the Summit included:

The carbon pricing statement and the new launch of the Carbon Pricing Leadership Club;
Increasing commitment to reach net zero emissions by the second half of the century;
Doubling the rate of global energy efficiency by 2030;
European Union countries committed to a target of reducing emissions to 40% below 1990 levels by 2030. The CLG has been behind business leadership on a call for at least 40% as has the UK government and our joint work through the Green Growth Platform;
Divesting $50 billion from fossil fuel investments within the next three–five years and reinvest in new energy sources (new coalition of more than 160 institutions and local Governments and more than 500 individuals). HRH will host a further discussion on this subject in early 2015.

We are pleased to note that the Corporate Leaders Group have been involved in many of these commitments.

Other key initiatives that the CLG team worked on

The Prince of Wales’s Video Address

A video address was produced by HRH The Prince of Wales and Clarence House, to be aired during UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s Climate Summit. The video profiled the work of the CLG and was well received, gaining wide coverage including in the Daily Telegraph, thanks to joint efforts by CISL’s media team. In case you missed it, you can view the video on our website in the right-hand side column of this page.

Climate Summit Bilaterals

Several informal bilateral meetings were held with decision-makers and the CLG’s Director Sandrine Dixson-Declève during Climate Week. Meetings were around EU policy commitments, organisation of the next climate summit (COP 20) in Lima in December, and continued support for UN initiatives and behind-the-scene negotiations to ensure a positive outcome in Paris 2015.

Bilaterals were held with a number of key decision-makers including José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres, the UN Secretary General’s office and a number of ministers and officials from across Europe.

All of the bilateral meetings confirmed the importance of the CLG in promoting the progressive business voice and catalysing strategic partnerships for change. The discussions with the European decision-makers focused on the passage of the 2030 climate and energy package and links to energy security policy. As you are aware, the CLG has been playing a key role at the EU level in ensuring that an ambitious 2030 package and low carbon energy union is adopted at the October EU Council meeting of Heads of Government.

New Climate Economy Business Briefing

The UN Summit also provided an important opportunity to promote the CLG’s New Climate Economy (NCE) business briefing and infographic. The CLG was recognised as doing an excellent job of translating the economic messages of the report into concrete business impact and many governments and business have asked for a follow-up discussion as to what this means in European terms.

As a follow-up to this work, the UN Secretary General and his team are keen to engage with us when he visits Europe for the IPCC synthesis report release in November and would like to further discussions around green growth and the low carbon economy narrative.

5 October 2014: The true value of Climate Week: in this opinion piece, Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Director, CLG, reflects on what the United Nation's climate summit means for green businesses

Original article: The true value of Climate Week  first appeared in Business Green on 3 October 2014 and has been reproduced below with their permission.

Working on climate change issues can be daunting. It is all-encompassing, requiring monumental shifts in thinking and action that can, at times, feel Sisyphean as we roll this immense boulder uphill, only to watch it often roll back down. However, last week at the Climate March and Summit in New York, not only did we push the boulder further up, there were many more hands helping. And it was a joy to see.

The UN Climate Summit and the People’s March was a rallying force for the climate. Not only did a significant number of world leaders attend the summit, including more than 100 Heads of State and Government, but they were joined by more than 800 leaders from business, finance and civil society. Heads of State gave speeches, some perhaps for the first time on climate change which is, in and of itself, worth noting.

The People’s March brought together people from all tiers of society - families, community and political leaders, indigenous people, religious leaders and celebrities. Joined by business men and women this was another remarkable change in the dynamics and social cohesion for the climate change movement, and symbolic of the fact that climate change does and will impact everyone, being the largest challenge faced by humanity today.

The energy and urgency of the imperative for climate change action was underscored by fresh discussions, commitments and individual leadership that signify a shift in thinking. For the first time ever, climate neutrality was mentioned in a UN document - meaning that there is an increasing commitment to reach net zero emissions in the second half of the century.

This echoes the call from business leaders across the globe made in our “Trillion Tonne Communiqué” to achieve net zero before the end of the century. We have finally reached a point in the debate where it is more accepted than not that reducing emissions will drive stronger economic performance, opportunities and healthier development. The old argument that acting on climate change is too economically costly is being laid to rest.

In addition to commitments on agriculture, forests, renewable energy, energy efficiency and oil and gas methane reductions, notable in NYC were the pledges made around carbon pricing by the World Bank and partners. The World Bank’s initiative brings together 75 national and sub-national governments and more than 1,000 global businesses and other organizations to accelerate carbon pricing activities to address climate change. We are pleased to have supported the World Bank in its endeavours and will continue to do so, through its Carbon Pricing Leadership Club.

Another major theme at the Summit was finance. A series of important pledges were made from governments and the finance community. For example, leading commercial banks announced their plans to issue $30 billion of Green Bonds by 2015, and a coalition of institutional investors committed to decarbonizing assets of $100 billion by December 2015 and to measure and disclose the carbon footprint of at least $500 billion in investments. Governments also pledged real money for the Green Climate Fund, bringing the total committed to $2.3bn. This is a good start, if still only a quarter of what the UN has called for by the end of the year.

These are just a few of the many commitments made in New York after a day of impassioned speeches from over 100 presidents and prime ministers – as well as a cameo by the new UN peace ambassador Leonardo DiCaprio – telling the summit that the world has wasted precious time and they needed to act urgently to deal with climate change.

In NYC, European Commission President Barroso reiterated the EU’s commitment to reduce emissions by 40% below 1990 levels by 2030, something The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders’ Group has long been advocating, as the minimum acceptable ambition. Now the proof will be in the pudding as this ambition, and the detail for delivery, will be confirmed later this month. China has indicated it will peak its emissions, but they have yet to set out when this will take place. And the US has approached this round of climate talks with real energy and commitment, but they need to show they can raise their ambition to further drive global action.

At the end of next year, Paris will host a summit where governments have promised to sign a comprehensive global agreement to lower emissions. It is only at that point that we will be able to look back to New York and see if this moment represents the start of the break through – the first step on a long path to a brighter and more sustainable future – or if it was another talking shop full of hopeful words that vanish.

Action on climate change now will be cheaper and less disruptive than doing nothing in the long-run, and if driven by a clear international agreement to move in the same direction, may be easier and faster than countries charting their own way forward. The science tells us what needs to happen and by when. Business is ready to invest and innovate, given the long, loud and legal signals it needs. Let’s hope policy makers and business leaders remember the spirit of New York and we carry on moving that boulder.

Sandrine Dixson-Declève runs The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group as well as CISL's EU Office and the Green Growth Platform.

24 September 2014: CLG in the press

Recent press coverage on the CLG's activities in and around the New York Climate Summit includes: the Guardian here and here, One India, Times of Malta, The Hill, Blue and Green tomorrow here and here and Energy Trends Insider.

23 September 2014: The Climate Has Changed: How Business is Turning Risk into Opportunity

In this op-ed piece in The Huffington Post, Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Director of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group discusses how there is a powerful and growing consensus among leading businesses on the need for action towards building a low carbon economy. More companies and investors are committed to bold leadership on climate than ever because they know it makes business sense.

23 September 2014: Video of HRH The Prince of Wales delivered at Climate Week, New York

The patron of the Corporate Leaders Group, HRH The Prince of Wales, delivered a video message on the opening day of Climate Week in New York. Members of the audience included business leaders and politicians, as well as representatives of the We Mean Business coalition, of which The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group is a member. In his address, The Prince of Wales defined climate change as "the most defining and pivotal challenge of our times". He called on business and government to “actively work together” and said that “taking action on climate change is neither inherently bad for business nor against economic interests".

23 September 2014: The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group at Climate Week, New York

The Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) will be represented at the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s Climate Summit, amongst Heads of State, Government, business, finance, and civil society climate leaders from across the globe. As well as attending the climate summit, we will also be closely involved in three important events. The first is a roundtable discussion on Carbon Pricing binging together business leaders on this critical issue, jointly hosted with the World Bank, World Economic Forum and the We Mean Business coalition, of which the CLG is an active partner. This will build on the work that the CLG team have been doing with the World Bank on their latest carbon pricing initiative, of which the CLG’s Carbon Price Communiqué is a part.

The second event, held in the Empire State Building, will feature Executive Secretary of the UNFCC, Christiana Figueres, along with corporate signatories of The Trillion Tonne Communiqué, founders of Track Zero, and city stakeholders, all exploring the role of cities in helping us meet our goal of net zero emissions, highlighted in The Communiqué. The CLG will also be hosting a breakfast Green Growth roundtable with business leaders and policymakers to debrief the summit and discuss next steps to Lima and Paris.

22 September: Climate Week NYC Opening Day

Watch business leaders and politicians make the case for action on climate change at the launch of Climate Week NYC. Highlights included a keynote address from US Foreign Secretary, John Kerry, remarks from Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, and Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank, and the launch of the We Mean Business coalition, of which The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group is a member. There was also a video address from the CLG patron, HRH The Prince of Wales.

September 22: The Climate has Changed, a new report by We Mean Business, on why bold, low carbon action makes good business sense

The Climate has Changed

This new report by We Mean Business shows that companies can be confident that creating a low carbon strategy makes good business sense. A group of companies identified in this report are demonstrating bold leadership on climate action driven by the risks and opportunities they know climate change will bring to their businesses.

We Mean Business is a coalition of organisations working with thousands of the world’s most influential businesses and investors. These businesses recognise that the transition to a low carbon economy is the only way to secure sustainable economic growth and prosperity for all. To accelerate this transition, they have formed a common platform to amplify the business voice, catalyse bold climate action by all and promote smart policy frameworks.

The Corporate Leaders Group is a founding partner of We Mean Business.

Download the report.

September 18: His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and leading businesses hail UN Climate Summit as key moment to tackle climate change

Read the press release.

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG), whose members include household names like Coca Cola Enterprises, EDF, Jaguar Land Rover, Philips, and Tesco, is urging governments to use the UN summit on climate change in New York on 23 September to raise ambition in international negotiations on climate change and commit to concrete action to drive down carbon emissions.

16 September 2014: Business briefing on the New Climate Economy report released

Better Growth, Better Climate

A short and relevant summary of the recently launched New Climate Economy synthesis report has been released by the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group.

The succinct briefing is prepared with a business audience in mind and highlights the key points of the report: that the next 15 years are crucial, there are major opportunities for economic systems such as cities, land use, and energy, and that economic growth and action on climate change can be achieved together.

Download the briefing.

Download the infographic.

16 September 2014: Launch of the New Climate Economy Report

A landmark piece of research that promises to turn the dialogue on the opportunity presented by climate change has been launched today. The New Climate Economy report provides the data for, and a new energy behind, a collaboration for action by clearly showing that growth and climate action are not incompatible. Climate action is no longer a leap in the dark, and this report offers yet another level for business and policy to confidently move forward on this agenda.

Quotes from We Mean Business

"The good news is that economic growth and action on climate are not incompatible. On the contrary, there are myriad possibilities for all sectors to get involved in driving low-carbon growth and economic transformation. But we must not wait: the longer we leave it, the higher the costs. Governments and business must act together to ensure the decisions we make today are the right ones to deliver a safe and sustainable future for all."
Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Director, Corporate Leaders Group, Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership

Forthcoming, 17 September 2014: The Climate Group to host Twitter Q&A with new coalition We Mean Business

Join Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Director, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, Aron Cramer, President and CEO, Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), and Mark Kenber, CEO, The Climate Group, for a live Twitter Q&A at 4–5pm London time/11am–12pm New York time on Wednesday September 17, using hashtag #WeMeanIt, to find out more about the initiative.

We Mean Business is a powerful coalition of world-leading business and climate organizations, who have joined forces – for the first time – to create a unified business voice in support of decisive action to tackle climate change, and transition to a low carbon economy.

Founding partners are BSR, the B Team, CDP, Ceres, The Climate Group, The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group and WBCSD: the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, which together represent thousands of top companies and investors.

Read more.

22 July 2014: Businesses welcome government keeping ambition on carbon cuts

Download the press release. 

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group today welcomed the news that the government would stick to its commitment to cut carbon emissions by 50% by 2027, as indicated by the UK’s Fourth Carbon Budget.

13 June 2014: President Barroso urged to ensure EU’s long-term energy security and climate policy go hand in hand

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) has written to President Barroso calling for him and his commissioners to ensure that the future shape of EU long term energy security and climate policy go hand in hand and that Europe maintains its leadership position on climate change internationally. A similar letter has also been sent to all commissioners. The letter states that the CLG firmly believes that the energy security debate offers Europe the political and economic opportunity to unite member states around a more integrated single energy market and to solve its energy tri-lemma of cost, security and decarbonisation. It also highlights the opportunity to stimulate jobs and growth and maintain competitiveness by investing in an EU-wide energy system that responds to energy security and climate concerns. The letter concludes by urging President Barroso as he finishes his tenure to make these links; leaving a legacy of low carbon economic development, and greater competitiveness, jobs, and growth.

Read the letter (pdf). 

15 April 2014: The Trillion Tonne Communiqué launch secures excellent media coverage

The latest call for action from The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, The Trillion Tonne Communiqué, has drawn considerable media interest. Within 24 hours of launch, twelve different news websites referenced the statement, including BloombergBusiness GreenGuardian Environment and The Hill. Social media also buzzed with mentions of The Communiqué. The website also received 4,000 visits in one day. On Twitter the #TrillionTonne was tweeted by many users to a combined audience of more than 100,000 followers. The various LinkedIn groups, on which The Communiqué was posted, put it in front of another 800,000 people. Businesses are continuing to sign up, with over 120 signatories showing their support.

14 April 2014: Trillion Tonne Communiqué launch profiled and linked to IPCC science

Influential US media site The Hill featured the launch of The Trillion Tonne Communiqué; linking it to the latest IPCC report that came out the same week. Eliot Whittington, Deputy Director of The Prince of Wales’s UK Corporate Leaders Group, was quoted by as saying: “The [Communiqué] signatories urge policymakers to take a number of significant actions in line with the science of the IPCC, including setting a timeline for phasing out greenhouse gas emissions before the end of the century, designing a credible strategy to transform the energy system, and creating a plan to manage reliance on fossil fuels, especially coal.”

13 April 2014: IPCC report ‘a wake up call’ says The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group

A coalition of leading UK, EU and international companies, including, Acciona, Coca-Cola Enterprises, EDF Energy, Shell, Tesco and Unilever, today welcomed the third part of the 5th Assessment Report from the Intergovernmental Panel Climate Change (IPCC), Mitigation of Climate Change.

Read the press release (pdf).

08 April 2014: Governments urged to ensure ‘trillionth tonne’ of carbon is never emitted

The Trillion Tonne Communiqué

Leading global businesses, coordinated by The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, today urged governments to put policies in place to prevent the cumulative emission of more than a trillion tonnes of carbon. They warn that failure to limit the stock of carbon in the atmosphere will see the world face unmanageable risks from climate change. The Trillion Tonne Communiqué statement has so far been signed by 70 companies from 5 continents, including major multinationals like Acciona, Adidas, CalSTRS, EDF Energy, ING, Mars, Shell, Tetra Pak, and Unilever, with a collective turnover of at least $90bn. It calls for a "rapid and focused response" to the threat of rising global carbon emissions, and the "disruptive climate impacts" inevitably associated with them. Eliot Whittington, Deputy Director of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group said: "This Communiqué sends a clear message from business at a critical time, when events in the Ukraine have refocused global attention on energy security, and just as the scientific consensus reminds us all of the imperative of collective action." The Trillion Tonne Communiqué is now open for company sign-up.

Download the press release (pdf).

Read and sign The Communiqué.

31 March 2014: Business leaders urge action in response to latest scientific report on climate change

Members of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Groups are calling for urgent action from governments in response to a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, which represents the latest scientific evidence. Eliot Whittington, Deputy Director of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group said: “The many negative impacts predicted by this authoritative report should make us all sit up and take notice. Climate change is not something that will happen in the future: it is happening now and without urgent action, things will only get worse. Enlightened businesses know this and want support from their governments to prepare for the inevitable impacts of climate change, and to help minimise future disruption and damage. We must act collectively and urgently in the face of this incontrovertible threat.”

Read the press release (pdf).

18 March: Deputy Director of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group speaks in support of EU ETS reform

Eliot Whittington, Deputy Director of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group spoke about a number of improvements required for a healthy climate and energy package at the Competitiveness and credibility: What is the best outcome for business from the EU 2030 climate negotiations? event. At the event, run by the Aldersgate Group, Eliot said EU ETS reform is “a priority and should be the main tool for delivering emissions reductions. It currently isn’t working.” He also reinforced the importance of innovation and the necessity of a “strong industrial policy that isn’t just about R&D but the whole innovation chain”. In light of how the rest of the world is taking action, Europe cannot afford to delay.

18 March 2014: Support from CLG and Polish Business & Science Platform for ambitious EU climate and energy package

Members of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group have supported The Polish Business & Science Climate Platform statement in advance of the European Council meeting calling on EU Ministers to support a robust 2030 climate and energy package that sets appropriate targets for GHG emissions and builds a climate for growth. It is the first time that the business leaders supported similar messages demanding a swift adoption of the package in order to send a clear signal to business leaders and investors doing business across Europe. The joint statement was sent widely to EU based policy makers and has been well received.

Read the CLG and Polish Business & Science Climate Platform statement (pdf).

17 March 2014: Polish Business & Science Climate Platform statement

On 17 March the Polish Business and Science Climate Platform (which includes CISL, West Coast Energy Polska, GE, Shell, Philips, Carrier, Skanska, ALTA, Warsaw Institute for Economic Studies and Buro Happold) released a statement supporting a robust 2030 climate and energy package that sets targets for GHG emissions and builds a climate for growth. This includes clear supporting policies including a transition plan for energy intensive sectors and a proper burden sharing framework. The statement was sent widely to EU and Polish based policy makers and has been well received.

Read the statement from the Polish Business & Science Climate Platform (pdf).

11 March 2014: Article in Guardian Sustainable Business

Rob Boogaard, acting CEO and president EMEA of Interface and a member of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group discusses reducing Europe's carbon – how setting ambitious targets will take business away from the ordinary and force it to search for new alternatives.

Read the article.

06 March 2014: UK Chief Executives urge PM to end uncertainty over carbon budget

Senior leaders of major companies including Shell, Unilever, BT, EDF Energy, Kingfisher, Anglian Water, and Lloyds Banking Group have written to David Cameron urging him to follow the advice of the Committee on Climate Change and maintain the UK’s fourth carbon budget at its current level.

The letter, co-ordinated by The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, is a warning from companies that further delay or confusion over the Government’s commitment would increase the cost of doing business and undermine investment and job creation.

It concludes: “We stand ready to support efforts by the Government to ensure that the UK is able to deliver a prosperous, low-carbon economy and to demonstrate the international leadership required to deliver effective action in Europe and globally, thus ensuring a level playing field for business.”

Read the letter (pdf).

Read the press release (pdf) 

27 February 2014: Corporate Leaders Group members warn that climate change will increase the frequency of UK flooding

Members of the Corporate Leaders Group and ClimateWise signed the Aldersgate Group co-ordinated letter to the Financial Times warning of an increased frequency in UK flooding due to climate change. The business signatories, which together have a combined turnover of nearly £200 billion, are calling for a cross-party political response to address the causes of climate.

Read the letter in the FT (£).

26 February 2014: UK Prime Minister supports The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group's call for EU-China relationship to focus on green growth

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, together with the Aldersgate Group and E3G wrote to the Prime Minister in November 2013 calling for ambitious initiatives on green growth to be put at the heart of EU-China discussions.

The three organisations set out the critical opportunity to align European and Chinese interests on the green economy, and develop a new approach to the EU-China relationship which maximises mutual opportunities and better manages trade pressures.

The Prime Minister responded, recognising the organisations’ extremely useful work with UK Government departments to raise the issues and opportunities represented by green growth. He also noted that the organisations’ comments had been taken on board in preparation for the EU-China Summit and were reflected in the resultant EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Co-operation.

22 January 2014: Business leaders urge Europe to keep up ambition on climate

EU Flags

A group of leading businesses including Unilever, Skanska, BT, Acciona, Shell, Philips, Lloyds, and Kingfisher today welcomed the European Commission's White Paper on its 2030 Climate and Energy package, which proposes a target of 40% domestic reductions in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, but warned that current proposals must not be watered down any further.

Download the press release (pdf).

13 January 2014: CLG meeting with UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey

Environment Minister Ed Davey MP speaks at the Liberal Democrat conference. Copyright Dave Radcliffe / Liberal Democrats

UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey. Photo copyright Dave Radcliffe / Liberal Democrats

On 13 January 2013 the CLG had a positive meeting with the UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey. The group expressed their support for the UK retaining its current level of ambition on climate change, and continuing to show leadership in the EU and internationally.

The Secretary of State welcomed the group’s role in helping communicate the business case and economic benefits of action on climate change. He urged them to help tell the low carbon investment story for the UK and the value of EU-wide action. Specific topics discussed included ETS reform, international co-operation and the UK’s Fourth Carbon Budget review.

28 October 2013: Corporate Leaders Welcome Green Growth Initiative

Today, business leaders from The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group joined European Ministers responsible for energy and climate change in Brussels for the European Green Growth Summit. Over the last six months, the CLG has supported the new informal Ministerial Green Growth Group and is now poised to work directly with the 13 ministers and MEPs on implementing their vision through a new Green Growth Platform.

Read the press release from the CLG.

Read the press release from the Department of Energy & Climate Change: Ministers make joint case for ambitious & immediate EU low carbon action.

1 October 2013: Polish Business & Science Climate Coalition

The CLG, with the support of the European Climate Foundation, has initiated the Polish Business & Science Climate Coalition, a coalition of companies and academic institutes. The aim of this initiative is to work together to enhance existing activities and discussions around the reduction of CO2 emissions in Poland and explore possible areas for collaboration in preparation for COP 19 and beyond.

On 1 October the coalition published a statement addressed to the Polish government calling for a more innovative and lower emission economy. The related letter and press release has been sent to Polish and EU media, Commissioners, Ministers, MEPs.

On 31 October, a low carbon roundtable will be organised in Warsaw by the CLG and the new coalition. Polish MEPs and Government officials have been invited to take part in the roundtable with the coalition members of the platform.

Download the press release.

Download the statement to the Polish Government.

1 October 2013: CLG members make business voice heard in response to IPCC report

Members of The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) have been responding to the IPCC report since its release on 27 September, urging government and business into action to reduce carbon emissions and increase resilience.

Carmen Becerril, Chief International Officer for Acciona, said in the FT that the report showed, “a comprehensive, effective and ambitious global response must be agreed at the UN climate change meeting in Paris in 2015”.

Andy Brown, Chief Sustainability Officer for Anglian Waterstated on CNN that the CLG supports the findings of the report and that business needs to tackle climate change and ensure it is resilient to its impacts.

Hubert Patricot, Executive Vice President and President Coca-Cola Enterprises, reiterated that, “this report highlights the reality of climate change to all business” and the need for “government and business to work together to mobilize a concerted and coordinated response to address the most significant environmental issue of our time”.

Nicolette Bartlett from the CLG stated on Al Jazeera that business recognises the important message this report delivers and highlights the need to act now.

Ian Cheshire, Kingfisher’s Group Chief Executive said on EurActiv: “As companies, consumers, and citizens, we all face significant potential risks from the changing climate, which we must work together to address. This calls for leadership, vision and cooperation. We hope that the UK and other European governments will continue to demonstrate their commitment to developing a new, competitive low-carbon economy.”

27 September 2013: Climate experts’ report must spur urgent action, say CLG business leaders

Climate experts’ report must spur urgent action, say business leaders

Business leaders from across the EU are urging immediate action from governments, businesses and society to reduce carbon emissions and increase resilience in response to the first part of the 5th report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released today. The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) responded to the report of the 1st working group of the IPCC, which reveals the strongest consensus yet amongst scientists that human activities are the main cause of warming since the 1950s. The report confirms a clear warming trend that is still apparent.

Download the press release (pdf)

18 June 2013: 'Making the business case for a 2030 energy and climate change policy framework'

On 18 June, the Corporate Leaders Group and Confederation of British Industry hosted a high-level conference on 'Making the business case for a 2030 energy and climate change policy framework' in Brussels. The conference was attended by representatives from the European Commission, MEPs, EU permanent representations and business leaders. Rt Hon Edward Davey MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, closed the event with a strong call for a European 2030 Framework for Energy and Climate Change that is ambitious yet gives Member States flexibility in terms of mechanisms for implementation.The event was followed by a lunch with CLG leaders (CCE, Shell, Alstom, Kingfisher, Unilever & Acciona) and the Secretary of State to discuss his green growth strategy and ways in which the CLG can work with him and a group of Green Growth Ministers who are determined to work together to raise the EU’s ambition on energy and climate change policy as a pro-growth strategy.

Read Ed Davey’s speech.

4 June 2013: Meeting with HRH The Prince of Wales

Senior leaders from the Corporate Leaders Group met for dinner with HRH The Prince of Wales on 4 June. The meeting confirmed the potential and continued need for a small but effective group of leaders to create and sustain the momentum for an effective dialogue on building a low carbon economy. HRH The Prince of Wales pushed the group to continue its high-level work with policymakers and was pleased to hear the enthusiasm of the CLG members to continue to make the case for green growth and jobs.

CLG

Senior leaders from the Corporate Leaders Groups with HRH The Prince of Wales, June 2013

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) brings together business leaders from major UK, EU, and international companies who believe that there is an urgent need to develop new and longer term policies for tackling climate change.

The CLG has been one of the most consistent and outspoken voices in support of strong, pro-business policies on climate change. Its activities and achievements range from supporting the cross-party consensus on climate change and the passage of the Climate Change Act in the UK, mobilising business support for a strong EU ETS and bold targets in Europe, and developing and delivering the Corporate Climate Communiqués – a series of international statements that have brought together over 1,000 international businesses in support of a robust, effective and equitable international action on climate change.

The CLG is cross-sectoral, encompassing energy producers, manufacturers, banks, retailers, utilities and others. It was brought together by The Prince of Wales and is managed by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

Chair of the UK CLG, Ian Cheshire; Chair of the EU CLG; and HRH The Prince of Wales

Sir Ian Cheshire and Philippe Joubert, Co-Chairs of the CLG, and HRH The Prince of Wales, June 2013

The current Co-Chairs of the CLG are Sir Ian Cheshire, Group Chief Executive, Kingfisher plc and Mr Philippe Joubert, Senior Advisor to the Alstom Chairman and CEO; Senior Advisor and Managing Director to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development in charge of Energy and Climate area, Electric Utilities sector.

The CLG currently has 23 members and brings together business leaders from a cross-section of UK, EU and international businesses. It continues to represent a progressive business voice.

3MImage of the Acciona logoImage of the Anglian Water Group logo
Image of the BT logoCocaCola Enterprises Inc.Doosan Power Systems
DSMEDF EnergyFerrovial
GlaxoSmithKlineHeathrowInterface
Jaguar Land RoverKingfisherLloyds Banking Group
Image of the Philips logoImage of the Shell logoSkanska
SkyTescoImage of the Thames Water logo
Image of the Unilever logoImage of the UTC logo

May/June 2013: Launch of the campaign ’A world you like with a climate you like’

Sandrine Dixson-Decleve, Director, CLG had the great honour to launch and moderate with Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action, five EC Communications events forming part of the campaign ’A world you like with a climate you like’ in Warsaw on 17 May, Vilnius on 22 May, Sofia on 28 May, Lisbon and Milan on 6 and 7 June respectively. Each event was focused on enabling a greater dialogue with policymakers, business leaders and citizens around key themes. Key speakers at the Warsaw event ‘How to put the Polish economy on a low-emissions track?’ included Marcin Korolec, Polish Minister of Environment and CLG business leaders from Skanska and Philips Lighting. The event in Vilnius ’Reduce waste. Reduce costs. Reduce emissions’ also had important contributions from the Minister of the Environment and companies such as Fortum, Nokia and CLG member Alstom. The event in Sofia ‘Building a low carbon society in Bulgaria’ was opened by the President of Bulgaria and had important contributions from Julian Popov, Minister of Environment and Tsvetelina Borislavova, the founder of the Green Bank and the Green Building Council, both active members of the CLG/CISL CEE Clean Energy Advisory Council. The events in Lisbon and Milan focused again on different topics with the Portuguese event looking at mobility and low carbon transport and the Italian event focusing on sustainable fashion and consumption.

9 April 2013: CLG Backloading event

 EU CLG Backloading event

On 9 April, in association with GLOBE EU, the CLG held a roundtable discussion in the European Parliament on 'Why ETS backloading matters: How a healthy EUETS can drive innovation and domestic investments' between MEPs and representatives from Shell, Alstom, ČEZ Group and Commerzbank. The event was hosted by Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP, and attended by several MEPs and their assistants. The aim was to provide the opportunity to exchange thoughts with representatives of various industries about the ETS backloading proposal from the European Commission. An overview of the key messages from the discussions was then sent to all MEPs ahead the plenary vote on 16 April.

14 March 2013: Meeting with Commissioner Potocnik

On 14 March, the CLG and industry representatives were invited to a very successful meeting with Janez Potocnik, the European Commissioner responsible for EU environment policy. The group provided input on the Manifesto for a Resource Efficient Europe, as well as discussing the importance of the circular economy and cradle-to-cradle thinking.

Read the press release.

14 February 2013: Business support for ETS Backloading with EU Permanent representations

The CLG organised a high-level breakfast meeting focusing on why adopting the backloading proposal is an essential step in restructuring the EUETS. The meeting took place in Brussels and brought together large power companies and Member States Permanent Representations to the EU to discuss and exchange their views on the subject.

Read an analysis by David Hone, Climate Change Adviser for Shell and CLG representative.

The Climate has ChangedThe Climate has Changed, a new report by We Mean Business

September 2014

This new report by We Mean Business shows that companies can be confident that creating a low carbon strategy makes good business sense. A group of companies identified in this report are demonstrating bold leadership on climate action driven by the risks and opportunities they know climate change will bring to their businesses.

We Mean Business is a coalition of organisations working with thousands of the world’s most influential businesses and investors. These businesses recognise that the transition to a low carbon economy is the only way to secure sustainable economic growth and prosperity for all. To accelerate this transition, they have formed a common platform to amplify the business voice, catalyse bold climate action by all and promote smart policy frameworks.

The Corporate Leaders Group is a founding partner of We Mean Business.

Download the report.

Better Growth, Better ClimateBusiness briefing on the New Climate Economy

September 2014

A short and relevant summary of the recently launched New Climate Economy synthesis report has been released by the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group.

The succinct briefing is prepared with a business audience in mind and highlights the key points of the report: that the next 15 years are crucial, there are major opportunities for economic systems such as cities, land use, and energy, and that economic growth and action on climate change can be achieved together.

Download the briefing.

Download the infographic.

The Corporate Climate Communiqués since 2007
The Corporate Climate Communiqués

Since 2007 the CLG has created Communiqués which set out the business case for an ambitious, robust, effective and equitable UN climate framework and offers a progressive global consensus on the shape of an agreement. 

The Carbon Price Communiqué

November 2012

The Trillion Tonne Communiqué (2104) is a global call to arms from businesses who take the science of climate change seriously and are demanding a proactive policy response.

Read The Trillion Tonne Communiqué. 

Download the infographic.

The Carbon Price Communiqué (2012) made the case for setting a price on carbon emissions as one of the main building blocks of an effective and ambitious climate change policy framework.

Read The Carbon Price Communiqué.

Download the infographic.

The 2°C Challenge Communiqué (2011) called on governments to break the deadlock in the international negotiations and take action at a national level to ensure a successful transition to green growth and a climate resilient economy.

Read The 2°C Challenge Communiqué.

The Cancun Communiqué on Climate Change (2010) made it clear that the case for a comprehensive international framework to tackle climate change still stood after Copenhagen, and that the need for action was increasingly urgent. The signatories urged governments to redouble their efforts to achieve this framework and also to take necessary and appropriate mitigation actions in parallel with such efforts.

Read The Cancun Communiqué.

The Copenhagen Communiqué on Climate Change (2009) was signed by over 950 companies from 60 countries including the US, EU, Japan, Australia, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Russia, India, China, Korea and South Africa; ranging from the world’s largest companies and best known brands, to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Read The Copenhagen Communiqué.

The Poznań Communiqué (2008) was launched by the CLG ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference in Poznań, Poland. The Poznań Communiqué set out the key elements of an international deal on climate change and was endorsed by the business leaders of over 140 companies worldwide.

Read The Poznań Communiqué.

The Bali Communiqué (2007) was published by the CLG to governments gathering at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali. CEOs from over 140 global companies signed The Bali Communiqué and it was published in a centre-page spread in the Financial Times and International Herald Tribune on the eve of the conference. It was an unprecedented move by business and received significant worldwide media attention.

Read The Bali Communiqué  

Down to ZeroDown to Zero: Joint Public–Private Low Carbon Procurement Compacts, Invitation to Suppliers

May 2012

The CLG and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) have joined forces to bring together major public and private sector customers in Procurement Compacts for new, 'low to zero carbon' goods and services. These Compacts demonstrate to potential suppliers that there is a substantial and organised market demand for cost-effective, low carbon transport and catering, and for heat and power from renewable biomethane. By sending a clear direction of travel message to suppliers and by demonstrating real demand, this joint public–private sector initiative aims to create market opportunities for innovating companies and help to generate growth and jobs in the low carbon economy.

Download Down to Zero, the full prospectus detailing the Procurement Compacts.

Low Carbon CompendiumLow Carbon Compendium

1 June 2010

This report, by The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group, demonstrates how the activities of some of the world’s largest companies are contributing to the delivery of a low climate risk economy. Profiles and examples of the activities and climate projects are given for each of the member CLG companies featured, including their carbon reduction goals and how these are being met.

Download a copy of the report.

Seize the Day: A Call to Action for UK Climate LeadershipSeize the Day: A Call to Action for UK Climate Leadership

29 June 2011

On 29 June 2011, the CLG launched a new report into Government policy, calling for stronger action on climate leadership. Seize the Day reflects the member companies' belief that the UK Government has set the right goals for the economy, but must dramatically step up action to deliver these goals.

Download

Download a copy of the report.

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23 September 2014: Video of HRH The Prince of Wales delivered at Climate Week, New York

Understanding Climate Science: IPCC Briefings

International Communiqués

Contact Us

The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group

T: +44 (0) 1223 768854
info@cisl.cam.ac.uk