By Amy Barnes ,
Head of Climate and Sustainability Strategy
On day two of the World Leaders Summit at COP26, biodiversity took the spotlight. During the morning session, world leaders explored how action on forest and land-use can support efforts in limiting global warming.
The day started with a key announcement regarding commitments to “halt and reverse” deforestation globally. More than 100 countries, together making up 85% of the world’s forests, have established funds in excess of £15 billion (US$20.45 billion) as part of the pledge, which highlights the importance of supporting indigenous people and local communities as part of this promise. Notably, 30 financial institutions, including insurers, have also pledged to terminate deforestation activities in their portfolios.
The focus of the afternoon session was clean technology innovation. The message was very clear; technology innovations need to be developed and accelerated to secure a clean, green future. Plans were outlined for international collaboration over the next decade.
All of the day’s discussion fed into the four COP26 goals, which are:
With the establishment of various task forces in the lead up to COP26, much has been done to secure commitment from industries, national leaders, and local leaders. Along with these commitments, there is likely to be an increase in governance to support their objectives.
Carbon pricing and carbon taxes, for example, have been key tools in race to net-zero emissions in the energy space. Countries have taken different approaches in their carbon reduction, from encouragement to mandate. With a narrowing window of opportunity to keep global warming at 1.5 degrees, there is a strong possibility that firmer steps will be taken to reach net-zero emissions in the future.
It is important for businesses to note how increased governance in this space could impact their risk outlook. With forethought and planning, resilience can be built into policy and process so that businesses can smooth the road as we transition to a more sustainable world.
This blog is part of the COP26 series.