Lighthouses for a perfect storm

photo of a storm over a still lake
Image: Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash

Ecology

Climate, Environmental Security and Sustainable Food Systems.

Multistakeholder coalitions and alliances.

The Mission Possible Platform

A multistakeholder partnership convened with the Energy Transitions Commission, it develops leadership coalitions across value chains to enable the heavy industry and mobility sectors to reach net-zero emissions by mid-century at a cost to the economy of less than 0.5% of global GDP.

The platform supports industry transition in the aviation, heavy-duty road transport, shipping, aluminium, concrete and cement, iron and steel and chemicals sectors – currently responsible for about 30% of global energy CO2 emissions, and which are expected to double under business-as-usual scenarios. The transformation of these sectors is vital to halting the global average temperature rise.

The Platform is supported by the Leadership Group for Industry Transition led by the Governments of India and Sweden and was announced at the United Nations Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit in September 2019.

Over 50 global companies, expert think tanks, government agencies, NGOs and other actors have so far been mobilized into the multistakeholder Mission Possible Platform or integrated into its seven industry tracks of work.

For any company seeking to get onto a net-zero emissions trajectory by mid-century from the industry sectors mentioned, the Mission Possible Platform is the key global initiative to help.

Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders

A global leadership network of more than 80 chief executive officers representing business from diverse industry sectors and regions that use their position and influence to drive change and raise ambition on climate action.

The Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders provided a strong business voice when they publicly called for “a comprehensive, inclusive and ambitious climate deal in Paris on mitigation, adaptation and finance” ahead of meetings between governments to negotiate the Paris Agreement in 2015.

Since then, they have continued to drive multistakeholder partnerships to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. They have galvanized support for the Financial Stability Board’s Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure and have implemented the recommendations. This is achieved through support from the Forum’s Climate Governance Initiative; the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition; the Mission Possible coalition on decarbonizing heavy industry sectors; and various other initiatives centred on building support for effective carbon markets, improving board capacity for climate risks, and identifying nature-based solutions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate Governance Initiative

A partnership network aiming to enable a growing number of boards of directors to implement a set of guiding principles to drive action towards delivering a shared goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.

Business decisions and actions will slow or accelerate climate change, and climate change will substantially drive risks and opportunities for businesses over the coming decade.

Ensuring that these risks and opportunities are appropriately addressed is the duty of boards of directors. To support the development of effective climate governance on boards – and in response to supporting the implementation of the Financial Stability Board’s Task force recommendations on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures – the Initiative was developed in collaboration with PwC and with the support of the Alliance of Chief Executive Officer Climate Leaders and the Forum’s Community of Chairpersons.

Following extensive consultation with over 50 board representatives, a set of comprehensive and visionary ”Guiding Principles for Effective Climate Governance” was developed and launched in Davos in 2019. The principles are focused on increasing awareness and ownership of effective responses to climate risk and opportunity. It also seeks to increase understanding of current mandatory and voluntary requirements related to managing, mitigating and reporting on climate risks and opportunities. It targets the climate competence of corporate decision-makers to enable informed investment decision-making, systemic risk and opportunity management and long-term business strategy.

The initiative is a key partnership network to engage with for any company seeking to enhance their board capacity in line with new or improved climate-action commitments and strategy.

Climate Reality Project Partnership with the Global Shapers Community

A partnership to provide Global Shapers with the training and tools to better understand climate science and drive environmental change in their cities.

For three consecutive years, the Global Shapers Annual Survey, taken by over 30,000 young people around the world, has identified Climate Change and the destruction of nature as the as the most pressing issue facing their generation. In response, and thanks to the generous support of philanthropist Rosamund Zander, the Global Shapers Community partnered with the Climate Reality Project to provide Shapers with the training and tools to better understand climate science and drive environmental change in their home cities.

Today, more than 1,000 Global Shapers from over 200 cities have been trained through this partnership and, as a result, they have carried-out over 160 projects in their local communities. Global Shapers are working together to launch initiatives to influence the Paris Agreement, limit plastics pollution, promote zero emission transport, support land restoration and conservation efforts and build climate change partnerships with local stakeholders to reach critical 2030 milestones. This is organized through the Global Shapers Climate and Environment Steering Committee, which also helps to mobilize young people around the world to #StepUpClimateAction – not only on Earth Day, but every day.

RE100

A global corporate leadership initiative bringing together influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity.

Businesses account for approximately two-thirds of the world’s end-of-use of electricity. Switching this demand to renewables is transforming the global energy market and accelerating the transition to a clean economy.

Led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, RE100‘s purpose is to accelerate progress towards zero-carbon grids at global scale. The initiative increases corporate demand for – and, in turn, supply of – renewable energy, by bringing together major companies committed to sourcing 100% renewable electricity globally in the shortest possible time frame (by 2050 at the latest).

The ambition is to set the bar for corporate leadership on renewable electricity, hold members to account and celebrate their achievements to encourage others to follow through communicating the compelling business case for renewables to companies, utilities, market operators, policy-makers and other key influencers; highlighting any barriers to realizing the business and economic benefits of renewable electricity as reported by RE100 members; and working with RE100 members and in partnership with others to highlight and address policy and market barriers to corporate sourcing of renewable electricity.

More than 200 companies – including many in the Forum’s Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, have joined RE100 and set a public goal to source 100% of their global electricity consumption from renewable sources since the initiative was launched in New York in 2014. This momentum continues to grow as the initiative develops across Europe, North America, India, China, Japan and Australia.

The Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB)

An international consortium of nine business and environmental NGOs convened by the Forum to create a common international framework for the reporting of environmental information with the same rigour as financial information in mainstream corporate reports.

The CDSB Framework helps companies provide investors with useful environmental information, enhancing the efficient allocation of capital and enabling effective decision-making. Regulators also benefit from compliance-ready materials.

Consistent with its mission of building the trust and transparency needed to foster more resilient capital markets through the internalization of material environmental aspects of corporate risk, strategy and performance, CDSB also supports the Financial Stability Board’s Industry-led Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) in two respects.

It runs the TCFD’s Knowledge Hub, which gives companies access to a range of practical content to help companies understand and implement the TCFD recommendations; and it has produced in partnership with the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) a joint TCFD implementation guide and related set of best practices.

Forum Partners are invited to engage with CDSB by joining the over 400 companies around the world that are using the Framework to shape this dimension of their mainstream reports and by engaging in its related technical development, corporate capacity-building and regulatory cooperation activities (e.g. with the OECD, European Commission and other national regulators) around the world.

The CDSB is the key reporting framework to engage with for any company seeking to disclose their emissions in line with their financial information.

The Clean Air Fund

A global philanthropic initiative that supports organizations around the world working to combat outdoor air pollution, improve human health and accelerate decarbonization.

Everyone has the right to breathe clean air. Yet, every year, millions of adults and children die prematurely, develop life threatening diseases or see their health affected by air pollution. The causes of climate change are often the same as the causes of air pollution, so improving air quality is a win for the planet, as well as its population.

The Fund brings together funders, researchers, policy-makers and campaigners to find and scale up solutions that will provide clean air for all. Launched at the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit in September 2019 with an initial $50 million in donations, the Clean Air Fund is working with the Forum to develop a community of individuals and organizations across the public and private sector to tackle this urgent issue together.

The UN – convened Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance

An international group of institutional investors committed to transition their investment portfolios to net-zero emissions by 2050.

As more insurance companies, pension funds and foundations are joining the Alliance, its objective is to grow committed assets under management from currently $2.4 trillion. In the process it wants to become the connecting piece in a fast-evolving but fragmented sustainable finance landscape.

Its united action is in line with the Paris Agreement’s objective to limit global warming to 1.5°C. To succeed, it will work closely with the companies that it invests in as well as with other financial players, policy-makers and society at large. It is setting intermediate targets and holding itself publicly accountable to those goals.

The founding members were Allianz, Caisse des Dépôts (CDC), La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Folksam Group, PensionDanmark, and Swiss Re. Alecta, AMF, CalPERS, Nordea Life and Pension, Storebrand, and Zurich Insurance Group are also members of the Asset Owner Alliance.

Green Investment Principles (GIP) for the Belt and Road

Principles calling for lenders, investors and corporates that invest and operate in the Belt and Road region to ensure that their projects align with the requirements of environmental sustainability and the Paris Agreement.

In 2018, the Government of China’s Green Finance Committee, the China Society for Finance and Banking, and the City of London’s Green Finance Initiative jointly launched a set of voluntary principles, the Green Investment Principles for the Belt and Road. The Forum, the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment network, the Belt and Road Bankers Roundtable, the Green Belt and Road Investor Alliance and the Paulson Institute helped to draft these principles.

The GIP’s suggested actions urge the incorporation of environmental, societal and corporate governance factors, measuring and disclosing environmental and climate information, using green financial instruments and adopting green supply chain practices. The Forum is a member of the GIP Steering Committee and encourages Members of its networks to become signatories.

As of June 2019, 29 global institutions were signatories. They include all the major Chinese banks engaged in the BRI region and many others. Signatories include: Agricultural Bank of China, Agricultural Development Bank of China, Al Hilal Bank, Ant Financial, Astana International Exchange, Bank of China, Bank of East Asia, China Construction Bank, China Development Bank, China International Contractors Association, China International Capital Corporation, Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, DBS Bank, Deutsche Bank, Export-Import Bank of China, First Abu Dhabi Bank, Habib Bank of Pakistan, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing, HSBC, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Industrial Bank, Khan Bank, Luxembourg Stock Exchange, Mizuho Bank, Natixis Bank, Silk Road Fund, Standard Chartered, Trade and Development Bank of Mongolia and UBS Group.

A GIP Secretariat organizes sharing of best practices and has a green project database for the Belt and Road region. The database aims to bridge the information gap between financiers and project owners, create business opportunities among signatories and other stakeholders, and improve the transparency of BRI investments. By signing up to the GIP, signatories also gain better access to good practices in environmental and climate-risk management, innovative green finance products and opportunities for financing green projects in the rapidly growing Belt and Road region.

Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment

A coalition of companies from the investment value chain, alongside governments and multilateral organizations, with critical roles in creating the frameworks and tools to price climate risks and facilitate resilient investments.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that climate impacts will cause $69 trillion in financial losses by 2100, with CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project) estimating that financial services industries will carry most of this burden. Yet, 70% of the $90 trillion invested globally in infrastructure between now and 2030 is expected to go to low- and middle-income countries, whose societies and economies are typically more exposed to climate risks. Consequently, the economic development imperative to invest in climate resilience combined with the need to make the financial system more attuned to climate-related investment risks, particularly in infrastructure, has never been more pressing.

Spearheaded by Willis Towers Watson, the coalition was launched at the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit in September 2019, in partnership with the UK Government and the World Economic Forum.

To date, companies and investors with more than $5 trillion of assets under management have joined the coalition, including Aberdeen Standard Investments, Acclimatise, Arup, Clyde and Co., DWS, Environment Agency Pension Fund, GARI, GRESB, IGCC, IIGCC, Impax, Jupiter Intelligence, KPMG, Legal and General, Lightsmith Group, Lloyds Banking Group, McKinsey, Meridiam, One Concern, Schroders, Standard Chartered, Willis Towers Watson, Zurich Insurance Group. International institutions include the Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford, FAO, Global Commission on Adaptation, Global Infrastructure Facility, Global Water Partnership, Green Climate Fund, Green Finance Institute and the TCFD Secretariat.

InsuResilience Global Partnership

An innovative partnership with the insurance sector to support the world’s most vulnerable people and nations as they seek to become more resilient to climate and weather-related risks.

With support from the United Nations, in September 2019 the InsuResilience Global Partnership announced its Vision 2025. This includes a commitment to ensuring 500 million poor and vulnerable people in the most climate-vulnerable countries (the V20) are covered against disaster and climate shocks. Specifically, the partnership aims to ensure prearranged risk finance and insurance mechanisms; cover 150 million people in these countries by microinsurance; and cover 10% of average annual climate and disaster losses in the V20 and other vulnerable countries by prearranged risk finance and insurance mechanisms.

Showing how capital markets have the depth of capacity and appetite to become involved, Swiss Re, along with other members of the Insurance Development Forum, committed to provide up to $5 billion of risk capacity to support delivery of these goals.

The Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance

A multisector partnership focused on finding practical ways to help reduce the devastating impacts of floods, even before a flood hits – and build community flood resilience in a more integrated way.

The Alliance was launched in 2013, spearheaded by Zurich Insurance Group working with the civil society and humanitarian organizations Concern Worldwide, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Mercy Corps, Plan International and Practical Action as well as research partners the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the London School of Economics (LSE) and the Institute for Social and Environmental Transition-International (ISET).

Floods affect more people globally than any other type of natural hazard and cause some of the largest economic, social and humanitarian losses. Loss of life and economic and insured losses are increasing in many regions, and flood risks are more interconnected and interdependent than ever.

In the first phase, the programme reached more than 225,000 direct beneficiaries in 13 programmes across nine countries. In the second phase, launched in July 2018, Alliance members aim to increase the investment going into pre-event resilience building by $1 billion and helping make 2 million people more resilient to flooding. Best-practice community programmes will demonstrate the value of resilience-building; a knowledge hub is compiling best practices and success stories; and members are advocating more investment in resilience with authorities and public and private funders.

The Green Label for Data Centres

A coalition promoting carbon-neutral computing and energy efficiency for data centres, with a new methodology to calculate the environmental sustainability of both data centres and IT infrastructure.

Multiple private and public sector partners including Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Swiss Federal Office of Energy, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), University of Luzern, Swiss Telecommunications Association (ASUT), Vigiswiss (Swiss Association of Data Centres) and Schneider Electric have partnered to launch the new Green Label for Data Centres.

ICT already consumes 10% of the world’s electricity, and for attractive data-hosting countries like Switzerland, data centres could consume more than 50% of the country’s electricity supply by 2035. Yet, current methodologies for measuring data centre efficiency do not consider all dimensions of data centre operations such as workloads (e.g. AI, IoT) and energy sources. This limits the ability to reduce the energy demand of an exploding industry and thereby curb the rise in global temperature. Some 10 pilot users, including some of the world’s leading brands, saw their energy use fall by 50-70% when adopting the label.

The label has now been signed into the Canton Law of Geneva for all new data centres. It promises to reduce the energy consumption of Switzerland by 30% overall and promote the country as an attractive data-hosting nation for cloud providers and data-intensive enterprises alike. The participating companies’ collective objective is to shed light on the often-unseen climate costs of a digital economy and provide a new solution for clean computing – a key lever for a low carbon economy – by expanding the initiative beyond Switzerland to enable adoption across data centres globally, particularly in data-hungry regions. 30 Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World: The Role of Lighthouse Projects The Green Label for Data Centres partners are seeking additional stakeholders required for the successful international expansion of this programme.

The Global Commons Alliance

A network of scientists, civil society organizations, businesses and governments to generate science-based targets for other environmental domains (such as biodiversity, water, land use and oceans) for companies, cities, investors and governments to use and implement.

The Alliance brings together 677 companies committed to a science-based target for climate change that results in further activity in the investor and disclosure community. The momentum generated by this initiative has prompted the creation of the Global Commons Alliance, which has four main components:

− The Earth Commission: This mobilization of earth systems scientists aims to provide the science to underpin science-based targets for key issue areas. A lead originator of the Planetary Boundaries thesis and head of the Potsdam Institute for climate change, Johan Rockström is co-chairing this initiative alongside Joyeeta Gupta and Dahe Qin.
− The Science-Based Targets Network: This network of scientists, NGOs, company representatives and corporate organizations, convened by the We Mean Business network in collaboration with WRI and WWF, is creating the methodologies to translate science into practical targets and tools against which companies and others can implement, track and disclose performance.
− Earth HQ: This track is building a unique network of communications organizations to mobilize a broad public movement to create the shift in sentiment necessary to accelerate the adoption of science-based targets.
− Systems Change: A report co-developed by the World Resources Institute and the Forum due for release in 2021 to show how systems-change initiatives – coalitions, alliances and network collaborations – can dramatically shift agendas like climate change and other environmental issues. Within this context, it will show how science-based targets can be a key lever for such systems change.

The Global Commons Alliance and the Science-Based Targets Network in particular, comprise the key global platform to engage with any company seeking to develop or replicate science-based targets for climate or other environmental dimensions of corporate performance.

Tropical Forest Alliance

A global platform, initiated to support the implementation of private-sector commitments to remove deforestation from palm oil, beef, soy, and pulp and paper supply chains.

Rising demand for food and consumer products is accelerating tropical deforestation. In 2018, primary forest equivalent to the size of Belgium was lost. More than 40% of deforestation globally is the result of expanding agricultural produce. Action is needed now, and private-sector commitments to remove deforestation from corporate supply chains are vital.

Hosted by the Forum, the Tropical Forest Alliance works with more than 160 public, private and civil society actors, indigenous peoples and international organizations to establish effective partnerships to reduce commodity-driven deforestation and build a positive future for forests. TFA identifies key forest frontier challenges and solutions and brings experts from around the world to turn ideas into action at the global and the regional level. It operates three regional platforms in Latin America, West and Central Africa, and South-East Asia.

TFA facilitates the sharing of best practices of ecosystem conservation and commodity production and works towards mainstreaming “forest positive” landscapes and supply chains with partners and in major economies such as the US, Europe and, most recently, China. The work of the TFA is supported by the Governments of the Netherlands, Norway, Germany and the UK as well as the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

The Nature Action Agenda

A multi-organization project helping business, governments and civil society protect natural resources and biodiversity by focusing actions on key sectors.

Including Business for Nature - convened by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), this project builds an economic and business case for nature with a high level group of champions from the public and private sectors, shaped by the World Economic Forum. An important international UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15) will take place in Kunming, China, in February 2020, where new global targets for protecting nature will be agreed. Working closely with the Government of China and other countries, UN agencies and NGOs like WWF, Conservation International and the National Geographic Society, the Nature Action Agenda will build a multistakeholder, business and investor action track to help governments shape this important agenda.

The Nature Action Agenda will produce a major report in June 2020. It will synthesize the science to reveal how to minimize the risks and maximize the opportunities of business and nature-related actions. It will set out key areas for engagement and related collaborations to join or scale up, and launch a major study on the risks and opportunities inherent in the growing area of finance and nature-based solutions. The study will help underpin the Natural Climate Solutions Alliance.

The Nature Action Agenda is working closely with Chinese researchers and business representatives to reflect the latest trends and insight emerging from China.

Natural Climate Solutions Alliance

An alliance bringing together companies, NGOs, experts and solution providers to work with governments and identify opportunities and barriers to finance natural climate solutions in new and existing markets.

Studies have shown that natural climate solutions (NCS) can provide around 30% of the emissions reductions needed to limit global warming to 2°C. Up to one-third of these solutions are achievable at less than $10 per ton of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) stored, which is already competitive in the voluntary market. Yet, despite their potential for reducing emissions, natural climate solutions attract very little public investment.

The Alliance also serves as a forum for knowledge-sharing and technical capacity-building to ensure natural climate solutions reach their potential. It is convened with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development to provide viable natural climate-mitigation solutions for achieving Paris Agreement goals, from forests to soils to mangroves to seaweeds and other ocean-based solutions.

The Natural Climate Solutions Alliance is the key global partnership to engage with for any company seeking to explore how best to engage in nature-based solutions as part of its climate-action strategy to reach net-zero emissions by mid-century.

The HSBC VERT-Infra Initiative

An initiative to accelerate the financing of sustainable infrastructure, particularly in developing countries, where needs are greater than capacity.

VERT-Infra focuses on sub-sectors of sustainable infrastructure that have traditionally experienced a pattern of underinvestment, especially in developing countries. These include energy, energy storage and transport and buildings, with an emphasis on sustainable urban infrastructure.

With these sub-sectors facing an annual investment gap exceeding $3 trillion, the VERT-Infra framework facilitates the trillions of dollars of investment needed annually by providing a framework that can be replicated and applied to a range of infrastructure investment efforts. VERT-Infra will develop a set of guiding principles, analytic tools and capacity-building strategies via a flexible and inclusive platform that can be applied in all countries. It will scale up investment in sustainable infrastructure assets to support national development priorities – such as Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement – and to support the UN SDGs.

VERT-Infra was developed under the auspices of One Planet Lab as a collaboration between HSBC, Climate Policy Initiative, IFC and the OECD. It functions as an umbrella structure in which other initiatives can participate. These include existing initiatives, such as the Global Infrastructure Facility, and in-development initiatives, such as the Closing the Investment Gap in Sustainable Infrastructure initiative, the Climate Investment Platform and the Leadership for Urban Climate Investment initiative.

Through leveraging the role of multilateral development banks (MDBs), national development banks (NDBs) and local financial institutions, VERT-Infra fosters an inclusive ecosystem to promote the development of investment-grade projects and accelerate the application of private-sector capital to infrastructure finance.

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) has also expressed support for VERT-Infra. VERT-Infra looks forward to partnering with the International Development Finance Club (IDFC) and MDBs that are well connected to regional NDB networks (e.g. the Latin American Association of Development Financing Institutions, ALIDE) on identifying qualifying NDBs.

The initiative has been discussed with the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), Agence Française de Développement, Japan International Cooperation Agency and Mirova, among other key stakeholders.

The Global Alliance of Universities on Climate

An alliance focused on joint research projects, talent cultivation, student exchanges, green and carbon-neutral campus implementation and public engagement for a network of the world’s leading universities.

Established by leading university presidents at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2019, these research and exchange activities will include strengthening bilateral or multilateral cooperative research programmes, studying technological and economic policy issues related to climate change, and the promotion of student exchange programmes.

The founding member universities of the Alliance include Australian National University, UC Berkeley, University of Cambridge, Imperial College London, the London School of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Tokyo, Tsinghua University, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, the Indian Institute of Science, Sciences Po and Stellenbosch University. Support to help scale up this alliance is welcomed.

2030 Water Resources Group (2030WRG)

A global public-private trust fund hosted by the World Bank that engages in partnership with government of water-stressed countries to help them close their “water gap”

The gap between global water supply and demand is projected to reach 40% by 2030 if current practices continue. In many places, demand already exceeds sustainable supply and, in others, water scarcity is hindering economic growth.

With the leadership of Forum industry partners like AbInbev, The Coca-Cola Company, Dow, Nestlé and PepsiCo together with the IFC, the Forum incubated the 2030WRG project from 2009-2012 before partnering with the IFC and then the World Bank Global Water Practice as a long-term host.

2030WRG has now grown into a vibrant network of 746 partners (308 from the private sector, 154 from government, 284 from civil society/other) working on national public-private platforms in 14 countries and states to advance national water knowledge and policy reforms, break down traditional silos and take collaborative action on ensuring water security. To date, the 2030 WRG project and its network have facilitated $890 million of investments into water-related infrastructure and technology and delivered multiple breakthrough public-private initiatives, including in agricultural water efficiency, urban and industrial water management, wastewater treatment and improved livelihoods for farmers.

These include the first large-scale (and world’s largest) fully automated community drip irrigation project in Ratmal, Karnataka in India; the first voluntary code of practice for sustainable Water Resources Group mine water management with 11 mining companies in Mongolia; and the first water administration system for irrigation schemes in South Africa. Overall, in its 11 years of operation, 2030WRG has reduced wastewater discharges by 294 million cubic metres and reduced water abstraction by 367 million cubic metres. The 2030WRG is the subject of a Harvard Kennedy School Business Case Study Review, as an illustration of an extraordinary systems leadership project.

50 Litre Home Coalition

A coalition focused on innovations in policy, technology and collaboration to advance responsible water consumption in residential households and commercial buildings as a strategic lever to deliver responsible urban water consumption in homes.

On the brink of a “Day Zero” scenario and forced to turn off the water taps for all its citizens, the city of Cape Town, South Africa, responded with drastic water conservation measures limiting households to use only 50 litres of water a day, in stark contrast to the usual water use.

As more cities face the risk and uncertainty of severe water shortages, a group of seven companies spearheaded by Procter & Gamble – Arcadis, Electrolux, Engie, JLL, Kohler and Suez – are rising to the challenge to make 50 litres of water feel like 500.

Partnering with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the World Economic Forum and the 2030 Water Resources Group, the 50 Litre Home Coalition will leverage extensive global and city-level networks to target city pilot projects in places where water is scarce. The coalition will pilot and scale up the adoption of new products, services and business models.

The findings from these pilots will in turn inform wider implementation. The existing public-private platforms of the 2030 Water Resources Group’s 14 active countries/states will serve as potential entry points and accelerators for the work. Progress is already underway in Xiong’an, China, while India, Mexico and the United States have been identified as sites for further collaboration.

Friends of Ocean Action

An impact-driven group of more than 50 global leaders from business, the public sector, academia and civil society that are fast-tracking solutions to the most pressing challenges facing the ocean.

Chaired by the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean, Peter Thomson, and Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden, Isabella Lövin, this global platform for action is bolstered by a multistakeholder network of more than 300 companies, expert organizations, governments and other actors to find solutions for a healthy ocean.

Supported by the Benioff Ocean Initiative and the Governments of Sweden and Canada and other issue-specific investors, the Friends of Ocean Action convenes projects and solutions to several ocean challenges, shaping global agendas.

Focus areas cover: scaling up finance for ocean innovation; fast-tracking sustainable aquatic food production; fighting illegal fishing through scaling up traceability initiatives from ship to store; ending harmful fisheries subsidies; liberating ocean data; decarbonizing the maritime and shipping industry; advancing gender parity in the ocean space; cutting plastic pollution and production; exploring new business models for marine protection; and favouring science-based ocean conservation.

Issue-specific initiatives emerging from the Friends of Ocean Action platform that are succeeding in scaling up impact include the Getting to Zero Coalition to get zero-emission deep-sea vessels operational by 2030; the Global Plastic Action Partnership driving the transition to a circular plastics economy at country level; the Blue Food Coalition connecting stakeholders in driving forward sustainable and equitable aquatic food production; and the Global Tuna Alliance, a group of businesses committed to eradicating illegal fishing and the abuse of human rights within the tuna supply chain.

The Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE)

A public-private collaboration between global leaders from over 70 companies, governments and organizations, who are committed to advancing the principles and practices of the circular economy.

Co-Chaired by the chief executive officers of Royal Dutch Phillips and the Global Environment Facility, PACE supports partners in scaling up action on plastics, electronics, food and the bio-economy. It develops projects and business models aimed to transform markets. PACE was built and hosted by the Forum and, since 2019, is co-delivered with the World Resources Institute (WRI) by a team based at the European headquarters in the Hague. The initiative is supported by both public and private funders, including the Government of the Netherlands.

Examples of projects that have been developed through PACE include:

− The Africa Circular Economy Alliance: Launched in 2017, it brings together 10 African governments and is co-chaired by the Governments of South Africa, Rwanda and Nigeria in collaboration with the Forum, AfDB, UN Environment and the Global Environment Facility. It has a dedicated secretariat with support from the Danish government. A multi-donor trust fund was launched in 2019 with an initial investment of €2 million from the Finnish government to fund circular economy projects in Alliance member countries, with a plan to expand this initial investment.
− SCALE 360: Launched in 2019 to advance Fourth Industrial Revolution solutions for the circular economy, its vision is to create a global network of national innovation challenge partners to identify, support and connect circular economy innovations from around the world. The first challenge was launched in 2019 in collaboration with the United Arab Emirates Ministries of Artificial Intelligence and Environment and Climate Change. The next national challenge is set to launch in Chile. The initiative is supported through an initial CHF 1 million investment from the UAE government.
− Circular Electronics Action Partnership: Unlocks the circular economy potential for electronics. With leadership from Royal Dutch Philips, the Capital Equipment Coalition was launched in 2018 to encourage large capital equipment manufactures to commit to a circular economy. This coalition includes AMSL, Cisco, Damen, Dell, Kpn, Lely and Vanderlande and convenes industry leaders to shape commitments, share challenges and draft guidance for implementation. In 2019, the work in Nigeria unlocked an investment of $15 million to support the Government of Nigeria advance the implementation of its Extended Producer Responsibility regulation in collaboration with UN Environment, the GEF and private-sector partners. This effort will shape a model that can be replicated across other countries on the continent. Further, with support from the Government of the Netherlands, three pilot projects in China will improve collaboration between electronics manufacturers and the government to help channel secondary materials into manufacturing processes. This effort is advanced in collaboration with the UN E-Waste Alliance and the WBCSD.
− The Global Plastic Action Partnership (also a Lighthouse Project).

The Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP)

A partnership that seeks to stop the growth in global plastic pollution by 2025 by creating national and regional action plans with governments, international organizations, civil society, business and innovators.

At the invitation of governments, GPAP helps stakeholders to build national public-private action plans on plastic pollution in line with circular economy principles and then finance and deliver them. Launched in 2018 with the Canadian G7 and the UK-hosted Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, its first partner governments are Ghana, Indonesia and Viet Nam.

In each country, platforms for knowledge-sharing and collaboration on tackling plastic pollution are built, underpinned by best-in-class analytics of the problem and the range (and cost) of potential solutions.

More than 60 partners from governments, business and civil society form the Indonesia National Plastic Action Partnerships. Through this network, breakthrough projects are devised and financed, with partners such as the World Bank and others.

Foundational Industry Partners of GPAP include The Coca Cola Company, Dow Inc, Nestlé and PepsiCo. Discussions are underway to forge deeper collaboration between the complementary efforts of the Global Plastic Action Partnership and the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (also a Lighthouse Project).

Alliance to End Plastic Waste

An alliance comprising more than 40 global companies from the plastics value chain – companies that make, use, sell, process, collect and recycle plastics – with a clear mission: to help end plastic waste in the environment in a globally coordinated and transformative way.

Despite the many benefits of plastic, waste has become a challenge in many parts of the world because it is not managed properly. In January 2019, the Alliance to End Plastic Waste was launched by Procter & Gamble alongside other Forum Strategic Partners: Dow, PepsiCo and Saudi Basic Industries (SABIC) in a chief-executive-led coalition.

Hosted by the WBCSD, the Alliance is a first-of-its-kind collaborative effort to develop, accelerate and scale up solutions to minimize and manage plastic waste, boost investment, engage communities and promote solutions including reducing, reusing, recovering and recycling materials. Alliance members have already pledged nearly $1 billion.

Recruitment continues, and the goal is to deploy $1.5 billion to develop and advance solutions over the next five years. The Alliance is taking a comprehensive, integrated strategy to address the breadth of the challenge, rather than a single aspect of the problem. It is committed to impact through tangible, measurable and transparent progress, bringing together world-class technical, materials, logistics and engineering expertise, collective resources and global reach of the entire plastic value chain.

A truly collaborative effort, this Alliance applies members’ know-how and resources in collaboration with governments, communities, NGOs and academics on projects, rather than simply providing funding to others. The Alliance model aims to provide resources to test and scale up waste infrastructure, recycling technologies and emerging business models, providing the capital needed to attract more investment from both public and private sources. The programme is globally focused, but prioritizes efforts in parts of the world where the challenge of plastic waste leakage is greatest, including South-East Asia and Africa.

Global Battery Alliance (GBA)

An alliance designed to enable an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable 19-fold scale-up of the battery value chain by 2030.

This is required to help ensure that the transport and power industries – representing 40% of global emissions – are on track to achieve the Paris Agreement goals. The Alliance has mobilized more than 60 public, private and civil society stakeholders representing the interests of the battery value chain.

GBA members include co-chairs from BASF, Eurasian Resources Group, Umicore, World Bank, the Government of Japan and partners such as the Government of Denmark.

The Alliance aims to accelerate the timeline in which batteries can become economically viable in the transport and power industries and to establish stable and transparent raw material supply chains characterized by good working conditions and shared prosperity. Additionally, the GBA is working to develop a circular and low-carbon value chain, and support the innovative use of batteries to bring energy access to 600 million additional people in low- and middle-income countries.

Food Action Alliance

A global, multi-institution platform to align and accelerate country, regional and value-chain initiatives and food systems solutions across Africa, India, Latin America and South-East Asia.

It works to deliver more effective collective impact for food and nutrition security, inclusive growth, jobs, environmental sustainability and resilience, in line with the SDGs.

FAA builds on a 25-country network of the Forum’s New Vision for Agriculture initiative, which collectively reaches millions of farmers and mobilizes significant public and private investment into improving productivity, profitability for smallholders and environmental sustainability.

Leading partners include IFAD, Rabobank together with CIAT, Grow Africa, Grow Asia, African Development Bank, AGRA, Bayer, Nestle, BKS (Farmers’ Forum India), SACAU (Southern African Farmers unions), WBSCSD, and New Vision for Agriculture partner companies spanning the value-chain from agribusiness to retail and cross-industry including financial services, mining and manufacturing, telecommunications and health.

Food Systems Dialogues (FSDs)

A platform for dialogue to provide an action track to shape the UN led Food Systems Summit in 2021.

Convened by WBCSD, EAT, The Food and Land Use Coalition, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition and the Forum, the Dialogues, having engaged more than 1,000 participants to date, provide opportunities for facilitated discussion among diverse stakeholders on food systems policies and economics, science-based targets and pathways, the potential of innovation and the need for all stakeholders to be included in the process.

Innovation with a Purpose (Fourth Industrial Revolution for Food Systems)

A platform to harness the power of technological innovations to transform food systems.

Food and agriculture have been particularly slow to harness the power of technology – with health, for example, attracting 10 times the investment into start-ups compared to food in a similarly sized market. The aim is to tie together a number of existing or emerging dynamic initiatives that collectively can shape the next generation of food system innovations in support of the SDGs.

The platform works with a network of more than 50 institutions, having engaged a community of over 1,000 leaders and institutions. Partners and initiatives supporting or joining the platform include: Grow Asia Digital Programme and Accelerator; Stanford University Food Systems for the Future; Yara IBM Open Field and Farm Data Exchange; Unilever Global Foods Innovation Centre at Wageningen University and Research Campus; Government of Maharashtra Data Utilities Platform; The World Bank Agriculture and Food Global Practice, HP 2030 Tech Impact, McKinsey and Indigo. (link here)

The Future of Protein “Meat: the Future”

A multistakeholder platform designed to transform protein delivery and consumption models to produce universally accessible, healthy and sustainable protein for a population of 10 billion, from a system that is currently contributing approximately 15% of GHG emissions.

Fuelled by new insight from knowledge partners such as the Oxford Martin School and the CGIAR ILRI (livestock) organization, the platform seeks to align, develop and scale up initiatives in three areas: accelerating alternative proteins, advancing current production systems, and shifting consumer behaviour.

One such initiative is the Cool Food Pledge, a programme where food providers pledge to reduce the GHG emissions of the food they serve by shifting consumers towards more plant-rich food that includes proteins; 10 billion meals are targeted by the end of 2023.

The World Resources Institute (WRI) is the secretariat, which is run with other NGO partners including UNEP, EAT, Health Care without Harm, Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance and others; corporate partners include IKEA, BASF and Bloomberg.

Africa Improved Foods (AIF)

A for-profit public-private partnership dedicated to addressing hunger and malnutrition through local fortified food production.

Its partners are Royal DSM, the Government of Rwanda, International Finance Corporation (IFC), CDC Group and Dutch Development Bank (FMO). AIF provides a scalable and sustainable solution to address malnutrition via local production of highly nutritious foods. Embedded in its business model is a comprehensive strategy to reduce poverty, create jobs and address stunting and malnutrition through supply to non-profit institutions, such as the World Food Programme, governments and NGOs.

In addition to its supply to humanitarian and development agencies, AIF sells affordable nutritious products to the mass market through retail markets in Kenya, DRC, Rwanda and Uganda. It produces enough nutritious food to nourish more than 1.5 million children daily.

AIF implements a value chain approach. The joint venture purchases locally grown staple crops from more than 35,000 smallholder farmers, mostly women, at prices that guarantee a predictable income and allow them to invest in their farms. The crops are purchased directly from farmer groups in rural areas and processed at the state-of-the-art AIF factory in Kigali that employs more than 300 local staff.

AIF’s final products are distributed to beneficiaries across DRC, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. Any profit AIF makes that is above a basic commercial return is given to the Government of Rwanda to fund further nutrition programmes. AIF and its partners aim to replicate and scale up this model of addressing malnutrition across the continent.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution and the Earth

A public-private cooperation network of technology innovators, businesses, governments, international organizations, civil society, academics and investors to explore how Fourth Industrial Revolution technology applications can help solve global environmental, materials use, resource management and related social challenges.

With support from leading foundations, universities and governments, the Forum is using its platform to explore issue areas including Fourth Industrial Revolution for the Earth (the application to global and regional environmental challenges in particular climate change and big data or AI); for the Circular Economy (the application to scale up the technology innovations like IoT and asset tracking that can help create a circular economy, supported by the UAE government); for Freshwater (through advancing new approaches to governance and policy and exploring technology-driven opportunities to improve water resilience in key supply chains and locations with partners such as CGIAR IWMI and the World Bank Global Water Practice); and for the Ocean (including the recent launch of the Fourth Industrial Revolution Affiliate Centre for the Ocean and Biodiversity in Norway, supported by the Aker Group as the foundational partner).

A powerful digital platform hosted by the Forum that will enable the next generation of socially and ethically minded entrepreneurs, start-ups and young innovators to help solve society’s most pressing challenges, as set out in the 17 SDGs.

UpLink will be an online set of communities, in which young entrepreneurs can join forces with leading organizations and companies to develop and deliver large-scale innovations and new business models, all with the aim of tackling the many issues, roadblocks and hurdles that the SDGs compel society to address.

Currently in development with foundational partners Deloitte, Salesforce and Microsoft Linkedin, the first UpLink prototype will focus on the Ocean and will be profiled at the Annual Meeting 2020. A further four SDG themes will be developed and launched in time for the Sustainable Development Impact Summit in September 2020, and the remaining 11 SDG themes will be developed and launched at the summit in September 2021. Forum Partners are invited to join in the design and development of the UpLink platform.

The Champions for 1 Trillion Trees Platform 1t.org

A new ambitious World Economic Forum Initiative, designed to support the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration which will run from 2021-2030, led by UNEP and FAO1t.org.

1t.org serves the global community of actors committed to contributing to the goal of planting, restoring and conserving 1 trillion trees worldwide. It will be set up as a global public-private partnership platform for leading governments, businesses, civil society, communities, youth and ecopreneurs and will seek to connect, empower and enable a community of millions and to unleash their potential for realizing unprecedented reforestation, restoration and conservation globally.

Science is clear about the climate, biodiversity and sustainable development of healthy forests. Growing, restoring and conserving a trillion trees over the coming decade could potentially result in 3-4 gigatons (Gt) of CO2 being sequestrated from the atmosphere each year, with the same trees storing up to 205 Gt of equivalent CO2 once mature.

Alongside the decarbonization of energy sectors, such nature-based solutions play a critical part in achieving global climate and sustainable development goals. Phase one of 1T.org will be a sprint to 2023 with the focus on embedding 1T.org into the global architecture in service of the UN Decade of Delivery, which will trigger political leadership, innovative models of mainstreaming data and monitoring capabilities, as well as investment into at-scale reforestation, restoration and forest conservation programmes globally. Several governments and many corporate partners and civil society organizations will engage in 1T.org. The project will also be delivered through UpLink, given the connection that restoration targets have with SDG15, Life on Land.

The Terraton Initiative

An initiative with the goal of removing one trillion metric tons of CO2 from the atmosphere, using it to enrich agricultural soils through carbon sequestration.

Even if all countries meet their commitments under the Paris Agreement, and all companies meet their individual commitments, atmospheric CO2 levels will continue to climb, reaching an estimated 580 ppm by the end of the century. By incentivizing the adoption of regenerative practice by global farmers, Terraton will create a shift in drawing down carbon from the atmosphere and restoring soil health.

Working across its large and growing community of farmers to adopt these practices, a marketplace – Indigo Carbon – will be created where farmers can be paid for every ton of CO2 they sequester or abate. Demand for this marketplace is expected to come from corporations, individuals, NGOs, and possibly governments looking to offset their emissions. In addition, the Terraton Experiment has been launched as a large, real-time, and open-source soil carbon experiment, to better understand the growing practices that contribute to climate positive agriculture. Key partners to date are Soil Health Institute and the Rodale Institute.

Just Rural Transition

An initiative working to create a shift to resilient food, land use and ecosystems, contributing to a growing international agenda on people, nature and climate.

At the UN Climate Action Summit (UNCAS) in September 2019, public, private and civil society leaders came together to catalyse a radical shift in food and land use systems, protecting livelihoods of the most vulnerable and protecting and restoring nature.

This work is taking place under the heading of a Just Rural Transition (JRT). It was endorsed by fifty countries and public, private and non-state partners. Actions to realize this vision for a transformation of land use were also launched, including a coalition to work on key policy reforms; and an investment partnership to mobilize finance into sustainable landscapes and supply chains. (The OECD estimates the top 51 countries that produce two-thirds of the world’s food provided approximately $705 billion a year in public support to agricultural producers).

Shifting this support towards sustainable use of land, prosperous rural communities and conservation of nature is a key step towards ensuring land use that is compatible with the Paris Agreement targets and SDGs. The investment partnerships will focus on catalysing finance to build resilience and sustainability in sustainable landscapes and supply chains, building on pioneering work emerging from the rice and cocoa sectors, to ensure resilience and sustainability for forests and other key ecosystems. Leading companies such as Yara International and Zurich Insurance Group have been engaged to shape this work, drawing on their experience and expertise.

looking up from street level at the reflective windows of skyscrapers
Image: Photo by Floriane Vita on Unsplash

Company leadership in corporate global citizenship

Dell Technologies – NextWave Plastics

A consortium of businesses that are building an open-source global network of ocean-bound plastics supply chains.

Dell Technologies have long been a leader in the creation of innovative supply chain models to reduce waste and support the circular economy. In 2014, they set up the industry’s first closed-loop plastics supply chain, forming a significant portion of the company’s reuse of 100 million pounds of recycled materials. In 2016, they went a step further with non-traditional sourcing and supply chain practices with a pilot programme to address the critical issue of marine litter, seeking to keep plastics in the economy and out of the ocean. To do this, the company processed plastics collected from beaches, waterways and coastal areas and used them to create new packaging.

In April 2017, after 18 months of feasibility testing, Dell Technologies launched the industry’s first ocean-bound plastic packaging. Recognizing the broad applications and benefits of a commercial ocean-bound plastic supply chain, they partnered with non-profit Lonely Whale, to create a consortium of like-minded businesses called NextWave Plastics. Working together, these companies including GM, IKEA, Trek Bicycles, Interface Carpets and Herman Miller, are building an open-source global network of ocean-bound plastics supply chains.

The group is also sharing best practices to drive more use cases for the material. The initiative has actively engaged scientists and advocates working with marine litter and ocean health to advise on a sustainable model that supports the needs of coastal communities and environments. The group is supported by UN Environment, with private-sector partners invited to sign up to the Clean Seas campaign as part of their commitment. With this consortium, NextWave expects to divert more than 3 million pounds in weight of plastics and nylon-based fishing gear from entering the ocean within five years, the equivalent to keeping 66 million water bottles from washing out to sea.

The Coca-Cola Foundation – Partnership with the Benioff Ocean Initiative at UC Santa Barbara

A collaboration between the Coca-Cola Foundation and the Benioff Ocean Initiative on curbing the flow of plastics from rivers to ocean.

The partners are supporting interdisciplinary teams in designing and deploying innovative applications to clean up plastic already in rivers and to effect community behavioural change and policy solutions that target the source of the pollution.

Captured plastic will be recycled, re-used or disposed of responsibly to prevent leakage into the environment. The campaign has spurred interest among teams around the globe and projects will be launched in 2020 across several continents. It brings together world experts in hydrology, industrial ecology, watershed governance and riverine engineering, and thought leaders from NGOs and private industry in the worldwide deployment of the projects.

Salesforce.com - Sustainability Cloud: Empowering Every Business to Drive High-Impact Climate Action

A carbon accounting product for businesses to drive climate action that will accelerate the world’s efforts towards carbon neutrality

Introduced in September 2019 during the UNGA and Climate Week, Sustainability Cloud provides an easy solution for tracking, evaluating and ultimately reducing an organization’s impact on the environment. Salesforce harnessed the company’s culture of innovation and its vision for customers to use the entire Customer 360 Platform for environmental good to create Sustainability Cloud. The result? Businesses now have a trusted sustainability platform that gives them a 360-degree view of their environmental impact and provides data-driven insight to make change the planet will notice.

JD – The Green Stream Initiative

An environmental project that promotes the use of sustainable packaging materials to reduce the environmental impact of the entire supply chain of consumption activities.

Since its launch in 2017, the initiative has reduced use of disposable packaging by 27,000 tons and has seen the deployment of recyclable “green stream boxes” across 30 cities. A total of 910,000 tons of paper have been saved by paperless systems in warehouses, lightweight packaging and box recycling programmes.

Leveraging its nationwide logistics network, JD has collected more than 2.6 million idle items including clothes, books, toys, plastic bottles and expired medication in 76 cities in China so far, and given them a second life through philanthropic donation, recycling or other eco-friendly disposal methods.

In addition, JD has committed to upgrading its fleet of logistics vehicles to clean energy electric vehicles, with more than 5,000 already in use in nearly 50 cities across China. JD has signed on to the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi), an ambitious global carbon reduction campaign led by CDP, UN Global Compact, World Resources Institute and WWF, in a bid to push forward responsible consumption with concrete and measurable goals. Read more

Bain & Company and The Nature Conservancy – Environmental Practice Partnership

A partnership between Bain & Company and The Nature Conservancy to drive conservation initiatives using market-based solutions and value-chain analysis
Bain’s Environmental Practice works with The Nature Conservancy chapters around the world to identify projects where the Bain portfolio of tools can be applied to find innovative approaches to solving problems related to climate change, resource conservation and plastic waste reduction.

Examples of recent projects include: the reduction in by-catch of the Bigeye Tuna in Micronesia using advanced technology and market-based solutions, launching an innovative end-to-end value chain model to deliver a sustainable-tuna offering to consumers in the US; developing market-based solutions to drive forest conservation in the US; developing an economically viable solution to reduce wildfire risk in California through remediation of the forests; implementing an innovative economic development model to promote land conservation in the southern US; defining a strategy to remediate the historical oyster beds in Australia; and reducing the climate impact of the cattle industry in Brazil.

In 2016, Bain committed to spend $1 billion over a 10-year period, which will be invested across social-impact causes related to the Environment, Education, and Economic Development. As part of this effort, Bain will continue to find ways to partner with change-oriented organizations like The Nature Conservancy to drive transformational change and create unprecedented, long-term improvements to the environment.

Bank of America – Environmental Business Initiative

A new commitment from Bank of America through lending, investing, capital raising, advisory services and developing financing solutions, to drive innovation and accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, sustainable economy.

Bank of America will mobilize an additional $300 billion in capital by 2030, increasing the company’s investment in low-carbon business activities such as sustainable energy and transport, climate resiliency, clean water and sanitation as part of its focus on deploying capital for responsible, sustainable growth.

The $300 billion goal brings Bank of America’s total commitment to more than $445 billion since 2007, when the company issued its first Environmental Business Initiative. Bank of America has deployed more than $126 billion over the past 12 years in support of environmental business efforts across the globe.

Banco Santander – Responsible Banking Targets

One of 10 Responsible Banking Targets to contribute to the SDGs, Santander aims to mobilize €120 billion between 2019 and 2025; and €220 billion between 2019 and 2030 in green finance to help tackle climate change.

Santander aims to facilitate €240 billion in green finance by 2030. It has been recognized as one of the most sustainable banks in the world, ranking third among global banks in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index. The bank is a leading provider of green finance, having raised close to €50 billion between 2015 and 2018.

Ericsson – Climate Action: Exponential Roadmap Project

A project bringing together experts and leaders from research organizations, civil society organizations and the business sector to explores if and how decarbonization in line with 1.5°C by 2050 is possible, with a focus on actions required in the coming decade.

Core partners include Future Earth, Stockholm Resilience Center, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), KTH Royal Institute of Technology, WWF, Ericsson, SITRA, Mission 2020 and Internet of Planet.

At the core of the roadmap lies a set of quantified solutions identified within different sectors (energy supply, industries, buildings, transport, food production and nature-based solutions) to show that there really are practical solutions at hand. The roadmap also shows how these solutions are embedded in a wider societal framework that illustrates the necessary policy, finance, leadership and technology developments to accelerate development.

In particular, the roadmap showcases the role of exponential technologies, such as digitalization, and how they could and should be leveraged for a post-fossil society. The Exponential Roadmap seeks to use its affiliation with the Forum’s platform to help explore the potential of these different decarbonization opportunities and how different technologies such as digitalization can help facilitate the change we need.

P&G – Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program (CSDW)

The programme consists of not-for-profit community development and emergency relief work to provide clean drinking water with the goal of reducing sickness and death resulting from drinking contaminated water.

Access to clean drinking water is a daily struggle for almost 1 billion people. Nearly 20 years ago, in collaboration with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, P&G scientists developed a low-cost powdered technology in a packet designed to purify even heavily contaminated water so that it meets World Health Organization standards for safe drinking water.

Working collaboratively with more than 150 civil society, private- and public-sector partners, P&G continues to raise awareness of the global water crisis and provide water purification packets at a subsidized cost to meet clean water needs. Through this work, P&G has helped establish household water treatment as a viable and practical means of improving access to clean drinking water in areas of the world where safe water infrastructure does not exist and in emergency relief use.

P&G is committed to playing its part in the global WASH community to help achieve the goal of universal access to safe drinking water and sanitation by 2030 (SDG 6) and has provided over 15 billion litres of clean drinking water in nearly 100 countries since CSDW began in 2004. In March 2019, it announced its latest goal to provide 25 billion litres of clean water by 2025. To do so, it is forging new partnerships with humanitarian organizations and extending CSDW operations to more countries to bring the power of clean water to more children and families.

SAP – Ocean Vision 2030

A business-led initiative focused on action, system-wide collaboration and innovation enabled by data and intelligent technologies to deliver the systemic change to achieve a cleaner ocean and healthier communities.

As a member of the Global Plastic Action Partnership, SAP is working with NGOs and other Forum Strategic Partners to launch Ocean Vision 2030 at the Annual Meeting 2020. The science indicates that a 20% reduction in material flow into the ocean each year for seven years can return micro-plastic concentrations to below 1990 levels. To achieve this, business needs to rapidly shift to single-use alternatives, scale up design for circularity, invest in waste infrastructure and benefit society.

The PepsiCo Foundation – Partnership on “She Feeds the World” Programme

A partnership between The PepsiCo Foundation and the global organization CARE on a programme to tackle gender inequality in the agricultural sector.

Women farmers play a critical role in global food production and represent 43% of agriculture labour in developing countries, but lack access to the same resources as their male counterparts, such as land, financing, markets, tools and training. If women farmers had the same access to productive resources as men, they could potentially reduce the number of hungry people in the world by at least 100 million.

A grant of $18.2 million will provide 5 million female farmers and their families in Egypt, Guatemala, India, Nigeria, Peru and Uganda with education, resources and economic support to help them increase their crop yields, incomes and access to nutrition.

She Feeds the World is the largest food and nutrition security programme in CARE’s 75-year history and will benefit 50 million female farmers and their families in the developing world. This partnership is part of a broader effort by PepsiCo to support a more sustainable food system by empowering women in its own agricultural supply chain, including through its Sustainable Farming Program currently active in 38 countries, and by investing in multisector agricultural programmes that have the potential to achieve large-scale systems change.

PepsiCo – Sustainable Farming Programme

PepsiCo’s programme to provide more than 40,000 farmers with training and resources to help them on the path to greater productivity, resiliency and sustainability.

As part of this, the company has set up a growing global network of more than 100 demonstration farms – both smallholder and large-scale – spanning more than 15,000 acres. There, they work with innovative local farmers to find and implement the solutions that work best in that agricultural region, from new irrigation and soil health management practices to measures to enhance worker safety.

Impact is measured by environmental and social criteria, and core business metrics like yield and quality. Importantly, the programme enables peer-to-peer learning, with other local farmers invited to visit the demonstration farms to better understand the practices and the advantages they bring.

Bain & Company – Ethiopian Agricultural Accelerator Platform (EAAP)

A multistakeholder platform representing a new kind of public-private partnership that can drive an inclusive, sustainable transformation of smallholder agriculture and food systems in sub-Saharan Africa.

Bain & Company has supported the Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency in establishing this first-of-its-kind Ethiopian Agricultural Accelerator Platform (EAAP). Since its operationalization in late 2017, EAAP has mobilized over $25 million and reached more than 6,000 farmers, increasing income by two-and-a-half times (where modern inputs are provided); worked directly with seven agri-processors, three of which are women-owned, and on average increased the revenues of these businesses by more than 150%.

EAAP is building two to three sustainable value chains that meaningfully increase smallholder farmer incomes and enable Ethiopia to become globally competitive in commodities and related packaged products. The platform assists local entrepreneurs (specifically intermediaries strategically sourcing from smallholder farmers in an inclusive way), encouraging foreign and domestic private-sector investment and coordinating participation by other system actors.

This approach – piloted in the honey value chain – will be rolled out across multiple value chains in Ethiopia to increase the number and quality of “farmer-allied intermediaries” operating across the country’s food system.

Nestlé – Nespresso Reviving Origins Programme

An initiative focused on restoring high-quality coffee production in regions around the world where it is under threat due to political conflict, economic hardship or environmental disasters.

Agronomists train coffee farmers on new techniques to improve their crop yields and increase their incomes, in addition to addressing infrastructure challenges such as wet mills, coffee cooperatives, water management and agroforestry (tree planting to improve quality and increase climate change resilience).

Nespresso launched the programme in 2019 with new single-origin coffees from Eastern Zimbabwe, where coffee production had dropped to less than 5% of its peak levels; Caquetá, Colombia, an area that opened following the peace accord ending 50 years of civil conflict; and Puerto Rico after hurricanes Maria and Irma destroyed 80% of the island’s coffee trees and harvest.

Through such investment and the commitment of partners, such as Technoserve, coffee farmers in these regions are starting to rebuild sustainable livelihoods, restore their local economies and bring much-needed development to their rural communities.

JD – The Running Chicken Initiative

The Running Chicken Initiative is JD’s innovative poverty alleviation effort, which provides goods of unmatched quality to its customers

Through this initiative, JD supports farmers in the poorest regions of China to raise free-range chickens by offering interest-free loans, breeding experts, part-time jobs on farm maintaining and support on the produce sales. Raised in a more ethical and healthier environment, chickens can spend 50% of their time outdoors, enjoy fresh air and sunshine and take 1 million steps, monitored by a specially designed pedometer. Sales of the free-range chicken products on JD platform has been a resounding success in the past three years, and the initiative has directly improved the farmers’ quality of life and helped removed their regions from China’s national poverty list.

Meanwhile, China’s discerning shoppers can trace the whole production and process through JD’s blockchain technology to ensure the quality and safety of the products. Following the Running Chicken project’s success, two more JD’s farm-to-table initiatives, Swimming Duck and Flying Pigeon, have been introduced in different poverty-stricken regions in China. Read more