Oliver Cann, Public Engagement, World Economic Forum, +41 79 799 3405, firstname.lastname@example.org
· World Economic Forum Founder and Executive Chairman has urged all Members and Partners of the Forum to commit to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 or earlier
· Letter sent by Klaus Schwab underlines urgent tone of this year’s meeting, which aims to put in place concrete measures for a cohesive and sustainable world
· Move comes as Forum stakeholders put in place a number of measures to advance societal and environmental agendas
· For more information, visit www.weforum.org; share on social media using the hashtag #wef20
Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 18 January 2020 – Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, has written a letter to all Forum Members and Partners asking them to tackle the urgent issue of climate change by committing to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 or earlier.
The move comes days ahead of the start of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2020, which convenes under the theme, Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World. In the letter, Schwab writes: “The opportunity and the need for companies and investors to show leadership on climate change is more eminent than ever before.” He added that making a commitment to tackle the urgent issue of climate change is also in line with the stakeholder imperative of the 2020 Davos Manifesto, a document released by the Forum in December outlining the concept of stakeholder capitalism in the modern era.
The year 2020 marks the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement on climate change. However, the years since have been marked by under-performance at the government and business level in implementing decarbonization policies. Schwab’s request will form a key element to discussions across each industry and community group at the Annual Meeting, with the hope of lending momentum to ongoing efforts by government, business and finance leaders at the beginning of this critical decade.
A number of initiatives are expected to be either launched or advanced next week:
According to Net Zero Challenge, a report published by the World Economic Forum this month, 7,000 companies worldwide now voluntarily disclose climate-related data. However, of these, only a small majority have adopted science-based targets aimed at tackling climate change. The report also notes that among governments, while 121 have declared an ambition to become net-zero by 2050, only seven so far have developed the policy framework to make it happen.
While progress to date has undeniably been insufficient, the report also found that a number of CEOs now view climate action as an opportunity. News from the private sector so far in 2020 would appear to back this up, with a number of announcements made in the past week including:
“It is still far too early to be talking about tipping points, but 2020 has brought with it a discernible shift in momentum as businesses realize that long-term continuity depends on them taking decisive, collective action on climate. The priority for the Annual Meeting is transforming this energy into a movement, not just of early adopters but the entire business community,” said Dominic Waughray, Managing Director, World Economic Forum.
The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2020 will take place 21-24 January in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland. The meeting brings together nearly 3,000 global leaders from politics, government, civil society, academia, the arts and culture as well as the media. Participants will focus on defining new models for building sustainable and inclusive societies in a plurilateral world.
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