COP 22: How Enterprises are Preparing for Climate Change Regulations
This week, leaders from across the world are coming together for the COP 22 Climate Change Conference in Marrakech, Morocco, after a milestone year that saw significant advancements in the regulatory and financial efforts to drive businesses to help limit the effects of climate change.
Last year’s event—the COP 21 conference in Paris—saw an unprecedented level of international agreement on one issue when the leaders of 195 nations supported efforts to prevent average global temperatures from rising by more than 2 degrees Celsius. By early October, the agreement was ratified by enough nations—including China and the US, the world’s two largest contributors of greenhouse gas emissions—to officially enter into force. This milestone means that the pressure forcing businesses to reduce their carbon footprint is only going to intensify in the coming years.
As we head into COP 22, this new reality makes it all the more important to understand how businesses are going to adapt. In an article published in the COP 22 edition of Climate Change – The New Economy, Enel X Chairman and CEO Tim Healy addressed the gap between awareness and action among businesses, and pointed to the growing importance of a comprehensive approach to a successful enterprise energy strategy.
Last year, MIT Sloan Management Review and The Boston Consulting Group released a survey of 3,000 investors and enterprise managers that found 90% of respondents acknowledge that having a sustainability strategy is “essential to remaining competitive,” but just 60% of respondents reported having an actual strategy in place at their organizations.
It’s clear that businesses understand the value at stake in the face of rising regulatory and financial pressure to reduce their carbon footprint. But few have the required capabilities or processes in place to both make informed decisions on their energy consumption and also ensure their organization executes on their plans.
This should come as little surprise. For decades, businesses have neither had the ability to gather deep insights into their energy usage nor faced an imperative like they do today. If they’re going to thrive in the new business environment taking shape in light of the Paris Agreement, today’s enterprises need a framework to help align their organization to develop and execute an energy strategy that can accomplish their goals.
That’s why Enel X and PwC developed the Unified Approach to Energy Transformation, a framework of four principles based on 15 emerging leading practices in place at some of the world’s most successful energy strategies. The framework is designed to help businesses embrace the emerging energy megatrends—which count climate change regulation among five other key business challenges—by making informed decisions about their energy needs, mobilizing their cross-departmental resources and capabilities to execute, and getting the full value out of their investments.