For anyone saying what do 16 year old climate activists 'really' bring to the table, tell them they bring change. Ruffling feathers and challenging the status quo is what they bring to the table. They have been able to shape the consumer interest and mount pressure on regulators. They bring back focus to the biggest emitters - the corporates and way they do their businesses. Driving big corporates to make sustainability as one of the key focus points of how they run their businesses is clearly evident from the recent years' annual sustainability reports and publications. The inflow of sustainable funding has also seen a rise in the last few years, coupled with regulatory, institutional support.
There is clear evidence that companies pursuing decarbonisation at the core, attract higher TSRs.
Now the other aspect of the status-quo that needs to be challenged is that the corporates across industries need to break down silos and work together to scale up existing technologies. Individual companies chasing TSRs by means of 'greening up' some aspects of their businesses is no longer enough. The 'greening up' approach needs to be all pervasive across the value chain. Easier said than done, right? Wrong! That might have seemed like a distant dream until a few years ago, but the growth & spread of sharing economy has shown how the masses can work & rely on peer-to-peer business models. In short, the technology to operationalise a cross industry collaboration is already there, the willingness and drive needs to be sparked.
It's high time that we operationalise cross industry innovative business models focusing on finding solutions to stop & reverse climate change. In essence, to speed up the implementation & scaling up of existing measures and post COP-26 action plans, following measures to 'operationalise' should be a top priority:
- Set-up of an open platform with all key projects and initiatives, experts, resources for green innovation with respective maturity levels and gaps (Technology and tools to manage large scale programs and project portfolios already exist)
- Cross-collaboration between different consultancies, data providers to bring about transparency on green initiatives across clients, non-profits and feed into that open platform
- Invest in and build AI, blockchain & IoT enabled tools to ensure and monitor transparent green financing to avoid fraud and put every cent to effective use
- Most importantly, do not over engineer the instruments that would be used for green innovation. Use technology and the 'power of the masses' to decentralise administration of various aspects within this endeavour. Empower and award them along the way. Over engineered solutions would only work & benefit some. This cause is bigger than all of us
Wrapping it with some key statistics for the target and opportunities that await.