Tackling climate change

Tackling climate change risks and opportunities across value chains is essential for smart business success.

Modern industrial society depends on a cheap and effective supply of energy to power our homes, businesses and the networks that connect them.  However, the evidence is overwhelming that the way we generate that energy is destabilising the delicate balance of gases in Earth’s atmosphere (mainly by increasing the proportion of CO2 and other greenhouse gases) that have kept our climate stable since civilisation began.  The consequences are potentially catastrophic.

World leaders have agreed that a ‘safe’ maximum global average temperature rise is 2⁰C above pre-industrial levels.  Our current trajectory is for at least 4⁰C.   We know that we have a fixed budget of CO2 and equivalents to 'spend' if we are going to reverse this trend.  At the same time we need to build resilience to the impacts of climate change that are already affecting businesses and communities across the world.  

We have the ingenuity, much of the technology, and the entrepreneurial spirit to tackle this huge challenge.  There is the opportunity to create many new jobs as a result, and business is at the forefront, driving progress. 

BITC’s Environment Programme helps business to understand their climate change risks and opportunities and take action to build resilience across their value chains.   

Priorities for action

  1. Measure energy use across your operations and identify opportunities to reduce consumption, install renewables, reuse heat, etc.

  2. Understand the carbon footprint of your products and services across the full life cycle and design for reduction, engaging customers, employees and suppliers to harness innovation.

  3. Explore opportunities to develop products or services that tackle climate change and create new value for your business.

  4. Identify vulnerabilities to climate change risks across your value chain and develop an action plan to bolster key supply lines.

See also:

Briefing document:

Toolkit: The Business Resilience Health Check - see what climate change risks may affect your business.