It’s no longer a question if climate change is going to happen or why an organization needs to prepare. The firms that can assess, communicate, and mitigate their carbon emissions stand to gain market advantage, David Irvine writes in HSE Network.
- Originally published in HSE Network, March 2, 2020.
- David Irvine was the SVP of EHS solutions at SAI360 (formerly SAI Global)
Climate change is a growing risk not only to the global economy but also to food security, public health, our homes – to our very way of life.
Greenhouse gases (GHGs) from human activities is the most significant driver of climate change and in the past decade alone, we have put more than 350 metric gigatons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels and other industrial processes, according to the World Resources Institute. And worldwide fossil fuel emissions are expected to be up 0.6% in 2019 over 2018, according to projections from the Global Carbon Project.
More needs to be done to reduce concentrations in our atmosphere. By changing our lifestyles and behaviours, we can help reduce the human impact on the environment. But primarily the seed of change needs to come from the private sector, as the role of business in contributing to sustainable development remains indefinite.
There’s much more technological innovation for review and discussion based on industry, ambition and appetite but ultimately the inevitability of climate change has never been clearer. The success and failure of business in the near future will be determined by how the private sector adapts to, and reduces, risks associated with climate change.
And those organizations that look ahead and turn detailed risk assessments of climate change into innovation will be much better equipped to meet the new world that awaits us.
Ultimately, the future of the next generation depends on the actions that we take today.
David Irvine, SVP, EHS
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