At the COP27 meeting in Sharm El-Sheikh, climate negotiators laid out a plan to implement the global goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The private sector must play a role in meeting climate targets and can build on that momentum. With this statement, Asian business leaders have committed to taking climate action and to safeguarding and managing nature sustainably.
The Council also conducted a survey (see box on the left below) to understand what drives corporate climate action in Asia, and what policies could accelerate decarbonization. See below for more on the key policy drivers we identified, and why we believe climate change should be a core part of the region’s economic growth strategy.
Climate change will have material impacts for corporations, particularly in Asia where physical and transition risks are significant. Accordingly, Asian companies have acknowledged the importance of sustainability and are now making commitments to reach net-zero carbon emissions within set timeframes.
But how are these commitments affecting their business strategies and changing their operations? And which policies could support an acceleration of their climate action?
To answer these questions, the Asia Business Council surveyed its members ahead of the COP27 conference. For the first time in 2022, a separate section was added to the Council’s Annual Survey with climate-related questions.
The survey results highlight the main drivers of Council members’ climate action and the strategies they prioritize for reaching net zero carbon emissions. It also reveals the key challenges they see for decarbonization and, crucially, the government policies that would help accelerate their climate action.
As Asian economies face recession worries, many are putting climate action on the back burner – but climate resilience goes hand in hand with economic stability.
Asia’s economic growth and development have been unparalleled over the past 75 years. Poverty has declined continuously and more rapidly than at any time in recorded history, and significant welfare gains have been achieved. These achievements have been driven by Asia’s growing participation in international trade and global value chains, which underpin the globalization process. More broadly, globalization refers to the integration of economies that has been achieved through growing levels of international trade, finance, and investment, and through the mounting exchanges of people, ideas, and data.
The success of the government’s green bond scheme provides plenty of scope for investing in groundbreaking energy projects and pursuing ambitious climate policy. Yet, our leaders can’t seem to think bigger than a few low-carbon buildings and waste management fees.
Increasing supply chain resilience in Asia can help blunt the worst effects of climate change, improve biodiversity and closed loop thinking, and even help eradicate the scourge of modern slavery.
Legco’s approval of the waste charging bill comes with a request for a delay in implementation that makes little sense. The success of the recycling schemes in Taipei and Seoul underline the role civil society can play in building trust and community buy-in.
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Blunting the impact of climate change is our time’s greatest challenge. The landmark 2015 Paris Agreement on climate pledged to keep the rise in global temperatures to less than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The overall Paris pledge is the sum of individual country pledges, known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), to drive decarbonization. But, …