We Mean Business Urges Corporate Powerhouses to Spearhead the End of Fossil Fuel Dependence
Groundbreaking Dual Initiatives Emerge to Rally Corporate and Public Momentum towards Renewable Energy Adoption.
Unveiled today are two distinct yet complementary initiatives: one squarely aimed at galvanizing the business world and another reaching out to the everyday consumer. The overarching goal? To fuel a rapidly escalating outcry for completely eradicating fossil fuel dependency within the foreseeable future.
Stepping into the limelight at New York's Climate Week, the We Mean Business Coalition—an influential conglomerate of global corporations—officially throws the gauntlet with its fresh "Clean Transition" campaign. This initiative aspires to construct what it calls an "ambition loop." You know, a synergetic cycle involving energy vendors, financiers, commercial consumers, and legislative players, all collectively speeding up the urgent task of decarbonizing our economies.
The "Clean Transition" initiative posits a nuanced argument: governments are dragging their feet on transformative decarbonization efforts. Sure, policy changes are essential. Yet, they argue, you're not likely to see governments stepping up their game unless there's an unmistakable nudge from the corporate and investment sectors, signaling readiness—and frankly, eagerness—for a greener, cleaner paradigm.
Embedded within the campaign are specific "Clean Transition Principles." These serve as guidelines for multiple stakeholders—yes, that means you, governments, oil magnates, corporations, and even the banking sector. They're prodded to put forth genuine net-zero goals, craft comprehensive Climate Action blueprints, and pledge to support their supply chains and collaborators in reaching their stringent net-zero milestones by the 2030 horizon.
Why stop there? This initiative insists that governmental accord in uprooting fossil fuel reliance must be formally integrated into the resolutions at the upcoming COP28 Climate Summit, scheduled in Dubai. They argue that a firmer commitment from the political echelons would make it easier for businesses to unlock a more remarkable cache of investments aimed at a sustainable energy switch.
The We Mean Business Coalition boasts that 13,000+ companies are diligently whittling down their carbon footprints. Yet, let's not fool ourselves—the elephant in the room is that fossil fuels are still the big kahunas, making up nearly four-fifths of the world's energy composition. That's hardly budged since the inaugural UN Climate Summit convened in Berlin in '95.
"At a global level, we've made great strides in scaling up clean energy solutions," said María Mendiluce, CEO of the We Mean Business Coalition. "Yet we're not reversing the trend on rising global emissions - a battle we will keep losing until we address the underlying cause: the combustion of fossil fuels.
"More than 80 countries rallied behind a call to phase out all fossil fuels at COP27, but action is not happening fast enough. The climate and economic warnings are clear. We need immediate, decisive action on a just and equitable transition from fossil fuels to a clean energy system."
A growing coalition of countries is expected to reiterate calls for a formal commitment to phase out unabated fossil fuels at the Dubai Summit. However, they are likely to face resistance from those countries who maintain fossil fuels can still play a significant role in a net zero emission economy.
The launch of the Fossil to Clean campaign comes after a poll commissioned by We Mean Business found that almost half of business leaders expect to phase out fossil fuels from their company by 2040, rising to 70 percent by 2050.
However, across all sectors, business leaders are still facing substantial barriers to deploying clean technologies, with 82 percent of those quizzed arguing government regulation remains the most important, or second most important, accelerator for the energy transition.
"We are calling on businesses to be the catalyst for change," Mendiluce said. "We encourage them to use the Fossil to Clean principles and send a clear signal to governments, investors, and suppliers of fossil fuels that the transition is underway, and fossil fuel demand will decline.
"This will create an ambition loop and trigger the rapid scaling and development of the clean solutions that are so needed to ensure sustainable economic growth."
The launch comes on the same day as The Fully Charged Show and the FairCharge campaign unveiled their movement under the banner #StopBurningStuff, which aims to counter misinformation around electric vehicles (EVs) and clean technologies.
The campaign said that with misinformation about EVs and clean energy at an "all-time high," it aims to combat "fear, uncertainty and doubt" by providing fast-turnaround rebuttals, placing spokespeople on mainstream media, and engaging with political influencers.
Quentin Willson, broadcaster and founder of FairCharge, said the campaign had been launched to "set the record straight" and would try and end the culture wars seeking to hamper EV adoption among the public.
"There's too much misinformation and irresponsible, ill-informed mischief being disseminated by some of the mainstream media, and vocal right-wing backbench MPs determined to sabotage the move towards renewable energy," he said. "This unchecked tirade of inaccurate negativity has the potential to damage the future of the UK car industry as they increase production of electric cars and invest in new vehicle and battery factories.
Fully Charged Show founder Robert Llewellyn warned that attacks on the clean tech transition from media commentators and politicians failed to recognize that the UK "does not exist in a bubble."
"All around us, developed countries are seeing electric vehicle sales grow and grow, and if the UK falls behind, then this lessens the chance we have of being beneficiaries of the investment and jobs that the transition to battery electric will bring," he said.