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Business case for low carbon growth is clear

By Dr Anthony Horton

As the climate change clock ticks louder than ever, more and more businesses are becoming part of the climate change solution. Two thousand business leaders met in Paris earlier this month at the Business and Climate Summit and agreed that the global economy could continue its focus on growth while addressing climate change risks.

The New Climate Economy report prepared by members of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate demonstrated that protecting the climate and economic growth can complement each other. Throughout Europe, the United States, China and in a number of countries, Governments have announced initial commitments and implemented credible emissions reduction steps.

There are now more than 500 climate related laws worldwide, including those related to pricing emissions (eg. cap and trade policies such as California) and new air pollution regulations in China or renewable energy and energy efficiency policies in a number of US states. The issue is now longer whether we should transition-the issue is now the speed of the transition.

Investments will now need to be based on thorough climate and regulatory risk analysis, and further work is needed to increase the consideration of carbon asset risk in financial institutions. Financial regulators need to collaborate with banks to establish environmental due diligence standards and to examine how future climate scenarios could be incorporated into financial institutions’ risk models.

Innovation policy will need to be geared to a circular approach in order to spur new ideas and have real immediate financial returns. Companies should take a leaf out of Unilever’s book-they have saved $220 million by implementing a “zero waste to landfill” program.

History shows that change can occur faster than many think possible. Countries are looking to the G7 nations to provide leadership and best practice in how to accelerate the economic transition. They are also looking to these nations to commit to a global target of zero emissions by 2050.

Anthony Horton blogs on his own site: The Climate Change Guy


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  1. Klaus

    The Government can learn from this. But what do they do? Repeal the carbon tax. Windmills are awful. Approximately 370000 people were employed in the renewable energy sector in Germany in 2010. Now this is not without pain as German electricity prices have risen dramatically. Funny enough, in 2014, they were approximately 50% below Australian electricity prices and I speak from first hand. This is real growth/future industry. When does this woeful Government wake up and look into future industries, education, jobs, export potential. NO GOD DAMN IT. IT HAS TO BE COAL. GOOD FOR HUMANITY. WTF!!

  2. cartoonmick

    It’s encouraging to hear the tide slowly turning towards common-sense with regard to positive action against climate change.
    Unfortunately there are still organisations and governments who are not working in the same direction.

    Politicians are the ones to muster a “backbone” and pull mega polluters into line, and get those renewable energy targets up as high as possible.
    Renewable energy targets are a major component of the eventual solution.

    A simple pollution solution is depicted in this cartoon . . . .

    Editorial / Political


  3. Bronte ALLAN

    Oh no! You have got it all wrong! Our “Minister for Science” (??), tony rabbit knows “all” about this climate change “thingy”, & if he says we have nothing to worry about, & that burning fossil fuels is ok, then it must be true, musn’t it? SACK TONY ABSCESS!! The stupid lying f-wit!

  4. diannaart

    Thanks Mick

    I needed a laugh, rather than expressing, yet again, my utter despair at our government’s deliberate ignorance.

  5. darrel nay

    The G7 spent $130million on their soiree in Germany, when they could have had a far smaller ‘carbon footprint’ if the had a skype conference. I for one won’t be looking at the G7 for leadership. They are corruption, nuclear power, wars and human trafficking – hardly trustworthy role models

    ps I noticed they have chosen to leave a lot of the barricades and security in place long after the conference has finished – police state

  6. Anomander

    OMG. I heard that feckless moron Jackie Lambie on the radio this morning explaining her vociferous opposition to renewables -“anyone who thinks they can stop the world from warming by making pensioners pay for for their electricity is stupid and dangerous”.

    Needless to say I was screaming obscenities at the radio (the reason why I have stopped watching television too).

    This is the kind of myopic thinking we are dealing with, and why opinion is being twisted away from the reality of dealing with the big issue that is likely to make the lives of pensioners much, much worse.

    FFS – we had a Carbon price that provided compensation to pensioners and low-income workers for the predicted price rises caused by the power generators refusing to adapt and cost shifting their burden onto the consumers. But no, the fossil fuel lobby funded Abbott to launch his distorted attacks and lies, ably supported by a biased and compliant MSM to destroy the initiative and drag us backward into fossil fuel oblivion, against the direction the rest of the world are heading.

  7. crypt0

    Pope Francis has called for action ‘here and now’ to tackle climate change and halt ‘unprecedented destruction’ of ecosystems.
    That seems clear enough.
    Given that the federal government counts among it’s numbers, many devout Catholics, are we about to see a “road to Damascus” conversion by the prime minister and his colleagues?
    Or perhaps they would prefer to stick with the religion of coal?
    On Tuesday, Tom Altmeyer, a lobbyist for Arch Coal argued the pope should be promoting fossil fuels if he really cared about social justice.
    or as Jeb Bush said …”I don’t get economic policy from my bishops or my cardinal or my pope”
    In Australia, it can be said that our government doesn’t get science or climate policy from scientists or climatologists.
    In fact, our government just doesn’t get science, period.
    Who’s a clever country, then ?

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