Walk the Talk on Climate Policy
A recent survey by the United Nations Global Compact found that, while 60 percent of the 1,700 companies surveyed publicly advocate for action on climate goals, only 30 percent align their government affairs activities, such as lobbying, with their own stated goals to reduce GHG emissions.
Released in the fall of 2013, the Guide for Responsible Corporate Engagement in Climate Policy provides guidance on this issue. It urges companies to take three actions to accelerate positive engagement on climate change policy:
- Identify climate change risks, opportunities and policy influences
- Align words with actions, ambitions and influences
- Report on policy positions, influences and outcomes
Together, these three actions will put into practice five core elements of responsible corporate engagement in climate policy—legitimacy, opportunity, consistency, accountability and transparency. No company will be immune to climate change impacts or public policies for addressing it. Sea level rise, more frequent extreme weather events and carbon regulatory limits are just a few of the climate-related impacts that affect businesses, their supply chains and distribution systems. To compete in the 21st century, businesses must align public policy engagement with rigorous internal sustainability goals.
 The UN Global Compact. “Guide for Responsible Corporate Engagement in Climate Policy: A Caring for Climate Report.” Retrieved from: http://www.wri.org/sites/default/files/guide_for_responsible_corporate_engagement_in_climate_policy.pdf.