Climate change

ICC leaders join French President for Climate Week Paris

  • 18 May 2015
Paris Agreement

Thousands of business leaders and investors are gathering in Paris to call for world leaders to deliver a strong climate deal which gives markets the confidence needed to make long-term investments in the low carbon economy.

Exactly six months before international climate treaty talks start in Paris, Climate Week Paris, convened by The Climate Group, starts today and features over 25 high level events, reflecting the continued momentum and support that the UN Climate Summit and Climate Week NYC built last year.

Francois Hollande, President of France, has confirmed his attendance to the ICC-sponsored Business and Climate Summit, the principal event of the week. The Summit will provide a central forum for over a thousand global business and political leaders, senior climate negotiators and policymakers. At the conclusion of the Summit, a series of recommendations will be presented to policymakers to help drive the dialogue leading to the UN’s COP21.

Underlining the importance of business mobilization, Mr Hollande said: “France, in the framework of the conference presidency, wants businesses to play a major role. We want businesses to make a commitment, invest, innovate and prepare – with us, with the states, with the non-governmental organizations, with societies – tomorrow’s economy. The world’s driving forces must act to make the Paris agreement a success and get the process going to fight global warming. This is what I call the Paris climate alliance.” (Davos Forum – January 2015)

John Danilovich, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), one of the leading partners for the Summit, said: “Bringing business leaders to Paris 200 days before the UN climate conference is as clear a statement as you can get that the private sector is fully committed to a successful outcome from COP21. We want the Business and Climate Summit to be a turning point in the way business and governments engage in the development of climate policy through to COP21, and beyond.”

Climate Finance Day, which is also part of Climate Week Paris, will aim to address the specific challenges and issues related to the financial sector’s “positive agenda”. Gerard Mestrallet, Chairman, Paris Europlace, Chairman and CEO, ENGIE and recently appointed Coordinator of the COP21 Business Dialogue, said: “Climate Week Paris will be an important step to encourage constructive and sustainable dialogue between the business community, financial sector, governments and international institutions. In the lead up to COP21, the French government and business have come together to launch the idea of a ‘Business Dialogue’, which will aim to develop concrete solutions to effectively achieve this low-carbon transition.

 Bringing business leaders to Paris 200 days before the UN climate conference is as clear a statement as you can get that the private sector is fully committed to a successful outcome from COP21.

“These solutions will require huge investments. This is a challenge that the financial sector can help overcome. This is what the Climate Finance Day will showcase by gathering major financial actors – investors, banks and insurers.”

Mark Kenber, CEO of The Climate Group said: “Businesses and investors are increasingly confident of investing in renewable energy, clean tech and smart infrastructure thanks to the growing evidence of the business and economic benefits. However they want a clear outcome at COP21 which gives them the long term certainty they need to massively scale up innovation, investment and deployment to the extent that it creates a real tipping point in the economy.

“Climate Week Paris is a massive show of force by the business community that they are leading the drive towards a strong low carbon economy, and that they want policymakers to enable them to succeed.”

All official Climate Week Paris events can be found on the website, available here.

Read highlights of John Danilovich’s Twitter Q&A hosted by the Climate Group last week.

Follow ICC and Secretary General John Danilovich at the event on Twitter via @iccwbo @johndanilovich using #BusinessClimate

Save the date: Climate Week Paris will host the Business and Climate Summit on 20-21 May, 2015 at the UNESCO headquarters.