COP26 and the Race to Zero- Is Your Business on Board with the Mission to Save the World?
So this past week the UK has been welcoming world leaders attending from 196 different countries for the COP26 global summit on climate change in Glasgow.
Following on from the last 18 months of change and reflection brought about by the pandemic, many people have taken pause for thought about the scale of change required to reverse the damage that humans have caused to the environment.
While I am not an expert in this area by any means, I am keen do what I can to raise awareness by sharing my knowledge and recent learnings. If you have been wondering how your business might play a part in the bigger mission to protect our planet – I’d like to signpost you to some ideas that might inspire you to take positive action and invite you to step up to show more leadership on this vital issue.
This week’s Get Fruitful Conversations podcast (Episode 13), featuring my recent LinkedIn Live conversation with Sustainability Consultant Jade Pluck gives a great insight into some simple actions that you can take as an SME to play your part in the Race to Zero (carbon emissions).
You might also like to listen back to Episode 4 with Martin White of Green Business Hub and to investigate the UN Sustainable Development Goals that I reference on our website here and also back in Episode 1 with Catherine Gallagher of Women Travel Leaders.
The Business Case for Climate Action
If you are yet to be fully convinced of the business case for action on climate change, you might like to take a look at some of the mounting evidence referenced in articles and papers from these leading organisations:
Where Should I Start?
There are so many ways in which you can take positive action, both to mitigate the risks of climate change to your business and the negative impact you may be generating towards the environment through your personal and business activity. Additionally, there are a myriad of different options you may choose to actually create a net positive impact. It can feel overwhelming to know where to begin.
I spoke with Sustainability Consultant Jade Pluck of Jade Consultancy to get her expert insights and advice. Jade explained that, as with most things in business, we need to ‘measure what matters’ - first off, to understand our current level of carbon emissions before making plans to make improvements. She told me that the recommended approach is to break this down into three stages, or ‘scopes’ – this comes from the most widely-used international accounting tool, the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol. Jade helpfully pointed me in the direction of this briefing from the Carbon Trust which explains how:
Scope 1 covers direct emissions from owned or controlled sources. Scope 2 covers indirect emissions from the generation of purchased electricity, steam, heating and cooling consumed by the reporting company. Scope 3 includes all other indirect emissions that occur in a company’s value chain.
Once you have calculated your carbon emissions you can sign up to the SME Climate Hub to publicly recognise your commitment as part of the United Nations Race to Zero campaign.
You might then also want to look at this Scope 3 Evaluator tool from the Greenhouse Gas Protocol and use the calculator and resources available at Repurpose Global when considering your plastic consumption and waste.
What can my Business Do to Make a Difference?
There are so many more ways you can make a positive contribution to the planet. How might your business step up to show climate leadership?
Here are a few more ideas to look into:
The Cop 26 Climate Change Summit has a page with resources to get you started. https://ukcop26.org/the-conference/get-involved/
Race to Zero is the UN-backed global campaign to halve global emissions by 2030 and create a healthier, fairer zero carbon world in time. Find out more and pledge your support here: https://racetozero.unfccc.int/
The Climate Pledge online here: https://www.theclimatepledge.com/
Ecosia is a search engine that plants trees every time you use their service https://www.ecosia.org/
1% for the Planet distributes company profits to environmental causes https://www.onepercentfortheplanet.org/
The World Economic Forum has some useful pointers on their website: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/09/4-ways-companies-take-effective-climate-action/
The Business Climate Hub is another good source of information: https://businessclimatehub.org/uk/
Closer to Home
Our Bigger Mission here at Get Fruitful
Here at Get Fruitful, we have been encouraging every business we work with to adopt the UN Sustainable Development Goals and to think about taking a Triple Bottom Line approach to measuring their success in terms of impact on People and Planet as well as Profit.
Last year we joined the B1G1 social giving movement and have been making small contributions towards charitable causes around the world that support some of the goals we feel resonate with our bigger business mission. We are particularly pleased to have found this project that allows us to support all three aspects of the Triple Bottom Line by planting fruit trees that enable families in Kenya to generate income.
The Get Fruitful Conversations Podcast is also part of our mission to amplify positive impact by sharing stories from other passion and purpose-driven entrepreneurs. If you haven’t already, do have a listen to gain some fresh inspiration to make your business a greater force for good.
What are you doing to make your business a force for good? We’d love to hear – come and tell us in the Get Fruitful Business For Good Facebook Group.