SAP announced yesterday that it was signing up to the Copenhagen Communiqué on Climate Change. The full text of the Communiqué is here, but basically it calls for “an ambitious, robust and equitable global deal on climate change that responds credibly to the scale and urgency of the crises facing the world today”.
The document sets out three aspects that need to be included in a Copenhagen agreement (edited in the version below):
• Establish a global emissions cap and long-term reduction pathway for all greenhouse gas emissions and sources, for the period 2013 to 2050 (with interim targets).
• Developed countries need to take on immediate and deep emission reduction commitments that are much
higher than the global average.
• Developing countries will need to play their part by drawing up their own emission reduction plans in line with their common but differentiated responsibilities and capabilities. The least developed economies need additional assistance including increased and adequate financing, and expanded cooperation to help them adapt to and join the new low-carbon economy.
It goes on to list the supporting elements that need to be in place, including such things as credible measurement, reporting and verification of emissions, policy measures, a framework for developing countries, etc.
The Copenhagen Communiqué was instigated by the Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group on Climate Change (CLG), which “brings together business leaders from major UK, EU and international companies who believe that there is an urgent need to develop new and longer-term policies for tackling climate change”. (The groups – one for the UK and one for the EU - were developed and are managed by The University of Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership).
The stated aim is to get 500 companies to sign up, with all of the G20 countries represented, but the 500 target already seems to have been achieved. There are 29 CLG members and endorsements by 304 large companies, 224 small to medium-sized enterprises and 19 Associations (according to the web site).
Members of the CLG include Deutsche Telekom, Sun Microsystems, Telecom Italia and Vodafone. Other large ICT companies endorsing the Communiqué are Alcatel-Lucent, BT, Cable and Wireless, Cisco, CSC, eBay, HP, Infosys, Ricoh, RM, SAP, Siemens, Sony Ericsson, SunGard, Symantec, Telefonica and Yahoo! (apologies for any omissions – it’s a long list – but there seems to be some notable names missing).
This is a highly commendable action from all concerned. It’s good to see large ICT companies giving backing to specific policy initiatives (albeit global ones where there’s no local market implications).
These initiatives are sorely needed as the prospect of getting an agreement at Copenhagen seems to be disappearing. US climate change legislation is slowing and the appetite for any binding commitment fading in the light of domestic pressures. And if the US doesn’t agree then China won’t …