FAQs on the Oregon Business Climate Declaration
What is the Climate Declaration?
The Climate Declaration is a call to action from leading American businesses, urging the public, policymakers and business leaders to seize the economic opportunity in tackling climate change.
The Declaration was drafted by Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy (BICEP), a project of Ceres, and asserts, “Tackling climate change is one America’s greatest economic opportunities of the 21st century”. The Declaration was launched on April 10th, 2013 with 33 founding signatories - the full list of signatories can be found at www.climatedeclaration.us.
What is the purpose of the Climate Declaration?
The purpose of the Climate Declaration is to demonstrate strong business support from highly credible American brands for taking action on climate change and energy policy at both the state and federal level and champion the innovative actions already taking place within American companies.
What is the Oregon Business Climate Declaration?
The Northwest Business For Climate Action (NWBCA) is a business initiative supporting action on climate change. NWBCA is leading an effort in Oregon to mobilize strong business support to advance Oregon’s economic and energy security by addressing global warming. Several Oregon companies have developed this declaration because business voices are needed and lacking to protect the state’s long-term competitiveness from global warming.
The Oregon Business Climate Declaration:
- Highlights Oregon corporate leadership on climate change.
- Underscores investments needed in energy productivity, clean energy and transportation and other initiatives to ensure we build a stronger, more resilient economy.
- Demonstrates the business case for taking action.
In October 2013, Oregon and the governments of Washington, California and British Columbia - collectively representing the world’s fifth largest economy – signed the Pacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Clean Energy – a regional effort to advance economy-wide policies to unleash regional innovation in energy and production that will address global warming and help assure our long term competitiveness.
After the signing , several companies including Cambia Health, Capital Pacific Bank, Iberdrola, Jones Lang LaSalle, Moda Health, Nike, Port of Portland, Portland Trailblazers, Skanska, Technology Association of Oregon and Umpqua Bank came together to forge the Northwest Business for Climate Action.
These companies recognize Oregon’s long history of innovative policy action and see this as an opportunity to lead with models for others to emulate.
Why should business support this?
Business plays a central role in advancing the needs of society with the goods and services they offer. In a time of government gridlock, it is imperative that business amplify their voice by leveraging their political power to advance the economic case for addressing global warming to assure the region’s economic competitiveness. Silence by business is no longer an option.
While the specific business case for addressing global warming might vary by company and sector, common areas of agreement include the need to address the significant supply-chain and financial risks from climate disruption, the business opportunities created in the transition to a cleaner economy, demands from employees, customers, investors and other stakeholders for business leadership, and the desire for greater market certainty so companies can make necessary long-term investment decisions with confidence.
If my company signs the Oregon Business Climate Declaration does that also mean it is signing the larger Climate Declaration?
Yes. If your company signs the Oregon Business Climate Declaration, it will also be listed as a signatory to the national Climate Declaration organized by Ceres, which has the support of more than 800 companies nationally. This effort is an opportunity to highlight regional leadership and convey specific support in Oregon for climate action from the business community.
Who can sign the Oregon Business Climate Declaration?
Any company that is based or has a significant presence in Oregon is invited to sign, regardless of size. Larger companies or those with significant presence in the state may have their logos listed.
Individuals are also invited to sign on and receive further information.
What is required in order to sign the Oregon Business Climate Declaration?
The only requirement for signing the Declaration is agreement with the statement. There is no cost associated with signing. Once you have decided to add your company name, there are no further requirements.
How can I add my company to the Oregon Business Climate Declaration?
If you would like to add your company to the Oregon Business Climate Declaration, visit www.climatedeclaration.us/oregon
My company has already signed the national Climate Declaration. Why support climate action at the state and regional level?
Almost everyone engaged in these issues agrees that global or federal action is the ideal outcome, but progress is agonizingly slow at these levels. Many businesses supporting strong state and regional policy leadership cite some or all of the following reasons:
- Invest where the action is, and where progress is possible. Businesses focus on getting concrete, measurable results for their investments of time, political capital and money. For a wide variety of reasons, neither Congress nor international processes are fruitful venues in the near term for significant climate or energy policy. State and regional leadership can often be the best way to break the deadlock at the federal level. There are countless examples of this dynamic, including the recent federal adoption of automobile fuel efficiency standards that were first adopted by the West Coast states.
- A seat at the table. Companies in Oregon will have the opportunity to shape the program to reduce climate pollution in the most efficient and effective ways that reflect our values and economies. Those businesses that work with government leaders to support climate policy will have the best opportunities to shape that policy. Experience suggests that state and regional models will be incorporated into federal proposals when progress is made at the national level.
- Early mover advantage. Businesses recognize the importance of identifying and seizing opportunities created by being early participants in market opportunities. Recent studies have confirmed the significant economic opportunities going to companies in California and other jurisdictions that have implemented innovation in the energy sector. Oregon can generate new economic opportunities.
- Addressing concerns from key stakeholders. Corporations are acting on climate change because key stakeholders – including employees, customers, investors, and non-profit partners – are expecting action as a concrete expression of a business’ values. This is especially true in the Northwest states, where public support for climate action is very high and growing.
Who is the intended audience?
The goal is to reach policymakers at the state level, the Oregon federal delegation, the media and the general public.
Where will the Oregon Business Climate Declaration appear?
In addition to the Oregon Declaration website (www.climatedeclaration.us/oregon) and press releases, we will seek opportunities to highlight the Oregon Declaration in as many venues as possible.
What are the opportunities for further engagement?
In addition to adding your company name and/or logo to the Declaration, there are opportunities for (1) spreading the message through social media, (2) telling your own clean energy or climate change story, (3) recruiting other businesses to join with you, (4) engaging with state and/or federal policy makers and (5) engaging the media, such as writing an op-ed.
What more can my company do?
Your company can develop a carbon reduction plan that looks for ways to reduce energy usage, shift to renewable energy and use cleaner fuels.
For more details about further engagement on climate action in Oregon, contact Andrea Durbin at Oregon Environmental Council at firstname.lastname@example.org or Carrie Hearne at Climate Solutions at email@example.com.