How business leadership can advance Goal 13 on Climate Action
Climate change is caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases associated with electricity and heat production, industry, buildings, transport, and land use. Climate change impacts the planet through higher temperatures, an increase of extreme weather events, changing precipitation patterns, rising sea levels, and ocean acidification. It disrupts ecosystems and human livelihoods, particularly of vulnerable groups such as women, children, and the elderly as resources, food, and water become more scarce.
Business plays a vital role in holding the increase of the global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change – the Goal that is at the heart of the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change, an international treaty adopted by the vast majority of countries in the world. The Paris Agreement brings all nations together with a common cause to undertake ambitious efforts to combat climate change and adapt to its effects, with enhanced support to assist developing countries to do so. Business, together with Governments, must act urgently and decisively to fundamentally change the greenhouse gas emissions associated with their products and processes in order to achieve global net zero emissions by the second half of the century. Businesses also play a central role in anticipation, building resilience, and adaptation to the current and expected impacts of climate change.