Business

Companies seeing impacts of climate change

At a time when the climate issue is being overshadowed in capitals around the world by economic concerns, some may be surprised that interest in climate change in both the investor and corporate communities remains strong. In a recent survey of the world’s 500 largest companies, 96 percent of the 379 responding said that climate change is dealt with at the senior executive or board level, while 78 percent have integrated climate change into their business strategies. In the same survey, 37 percent say the impacts of climate change are already affecting their operations, up sharply from just 10 percent two years ago.

To understand why, just look at the numbers.

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Hear from Experts on the Latest Actions in Carbon Markets and Climate Policy

Media Advisory
Sept. 25, 2012
Contact: Laura Rehrmann, rehrmannl@c2es.org, 703-516-0621

Hear from Experts on the Latest Actions in Carbon Markets and Climate Policy

WASHINGTON – Join the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions and international, national and state experts Oct. 1-2 at Carbon Forum North America, organized by the International Emissions Trading Association. C2ES is the program sponsor for Carbon Forum North America, which has established itself as the go-to event to learn the latest thinking and developments in climate policy and carbon markets.

C2ES President Eileen Claussen provides insights on the prospects for low-carbon climate and energy policies in the opening plenary, and other C2ES experts will discuss state climate action, carbon pricing, and international climate policy.

Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, will be the opening keynote speaker.

WHAT: Carbon Forum North America

WHEN: Oct. 1-2, 2012

WHERE: Marriott Metro Center, 775 12th St. NW, Washington, D.C.

MEDIA: Press should pre-register by sending name, organization and telephone number to Ben McCarthy at mccarthy@ieta.org. Press passes will also be available at the door. Reporters who are not pre-registered should arrive early to secure passes.

C2ES at Carbon Forum North America

Monday, Oct. 1
9:15 AM: Plenary I – Strategizing Climate and Energy: How Are We Doing
C2ES Speaker: Eileen Claussen, President

Tuesday, Oct. 2
9:00 AM: North America 2050 (NA2050)—A New Partnership for Progress
C2ES Moderator: Judi Greenwald, Vice President of Technology & Innovation

2:00 PM: Beyond Cap & Trade: Alternative Carbon Pricing Mechanisms
C2ES Moderator: Janet Peace, Vice President of Markets & Business Strategy

3:45 PM: Plenary IV: International Climate Strategy
C2ES Speaker: Elliot Diringer – Executive Vice President

About C2ES

The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent nonprofit, nonpartisan organization promoting strong policy and action to address the twin challenges of energy and climate change. Launched in November 2011, C2ES is the successor to the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.

Rio Tinto/Energy Policy Institute 'Energy Exchange Breakfast Series', Brisbane

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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C2ES President Eileen Claussen headlines the finall installment of a four-part breakfast series designed to facilitate constructive, informed and robust debate on energy policy.

Claussen, a critical thought leader on energy and climate issues, will share her views on climate change, energy policy and the leadership needed to find solutions for these global challenges.

The previous three breakfasts have featured keynote speakers:

Dr Fatih Birol - Chief Economist of the International Energy Agency;

Mr Zhang Guobao - Chairman of the Advisory Board of China's National Energy Committee and Deputy Chairman of the Economic Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference;

To download the slide presentation please click here.

To see the video please click here.

Dr Bryan Hannegan, Vice President, Environment and Renewables for the US-based Electric Power Research Institute;

To download the slide presentation please click here.

For information on the Energy Exchange Series click here.

Public Workshop: Developing Industrial Benchmarks

Promoted in Energy Efficiency section: 
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Pace University1 Pace PlazaNew York, NY 10038

Co-hosts: International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP) and North America 2050 (NA2050)

Format: One day public workshop in New York City with presentations and participation from ICAP and NA2050 representatives and from selected experts from various backgrounds (academia, nonprofit, industry). Presentations will be followed by open discussions among the participants. About 60 attendees are expected.

Location: Pace University, 1 Pace Plaza, New York, NY 10038

Registration: Participation is free of charge and open to interested stakeholders from North America and from around the world. Registration is open until September 7, 2012. Please send your information (name, institution, position and address) to events@icapcarbonaction.com in order to register. Please note that registration may be limited due to room constraints.


Questions?
ICAP:         Camille Serre Contact:  camille.serre@icapcarbonaction.com +49 (30) 3087760-83
NA2050:     Kyle Aarons, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions aaronsk@c2es.org +1 703-516-0632

Invitees:    ICAP members; NA2050 members; government officials from U.S. states and Canadian provinces; officials from the U.S. and Canadian federal governments; industry representatives; representatives from the nongovernmental sector and academia; any other interested party. The workshop will be open to the public.

Objectives

  • Explore approaches to developing industrial energy or greenhouse gas emissions benchmarks that could inform either allowances allocation under a GHG cap and trade program, performance-based GHG regulations or voluntary programs;
  • Gain understanding of current approaches to industry benchmarking, including those being implemented in the EU, California and elsewhere;
  • Examine international best practices to identify appropriate sectors with which to begin benchmarking and how to design benchmarks;
  • Identify benefits of coordinating benchmarking approaches;
  • Foster broader communication and collaboration on energy and climate policy; and
  • Identify possible next steps for continued collaboration between NA2050 and ICAP.
     

Draft Agenda
Monday, September 24: Public Workshop
9:00 – 18:00

Session 1: The Context/Rationale for Benchmarking
Provide context for benchmarking, the role of benchmarking in ICAP and NA2050 jurisdictions, and reasons for benchmark use. Identify key elements for defining benchmarks, how benchmarking has been used in the past, and prospects for the future.

Session 2: Existing and Innovative Approaches to Benchmarking Policy around the World
Focus on benchmark policymaking. Provide an overview of the global status of benchmarking, while exploring similarities and differences among existing programs. Discuss reasoning behind use of benchmarking and compare to alternatives.

Session 3: Constructing Benchmarks
Focus on the technical aspects of benchmark construction and implementation. Present the general approach to elaborating benchmarks. Illustrate steps in establishing benchmarks and what factors go into these decisions in selected industry sectors, both from the regulator and industry perspective. Discuss what has worked well and where there are opportunities for improvement, and highlight similarities and differences among existing programs and why these differences exist.

Session 4: Implementation Challenges and Lessons Learned
Reflect on the challenges in the implementation of benchmarks and on lessons learned, both from the regulator and industry perspective. Discuss the benefits arising from benchmarking programs and how industries have changed their practices.

Session 5: Conclusions and Outlook
 

Eileen Claussen Comments on the Federal Government's New Fuel Economy Standards

Statement of Eileen Claussen
President, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions

Aug. 28, 2012

This is a win all around - it saves consumers money, reduces dependence on foreign oil, and is the biggest step ever by the United States aimed at reducing carbon emissions.

While Congress remains utterly gridlocked on energy and climate issues, the Obama administration and the auto industry have proven that real progress is still possible.  Working together, they've crafted a common-sense solution that taps technological innovation to benefit both the economy and the environment. Credit also goes to the state of California, for paving the way, and to the regulatory flexibility afforded by the Clean Air Act.

This is a victory for climate protection, but only one of the major steps needed to dramatically reduce our carbon emissions. Next we must tackle emissions from power plants and other stationary sources. The climate benefits may not be as easy to see as lower prices at the pump, but are no less real.

Recent extreme weather and the worst drought in half a century illustrate the costly toll of increased warming. Climate change is no longer a prediction - it is here and now. As the costs become more pronounced, we will hopefully see the strong public support and political leadership needed to mobilize an effective across-the-board response.

For more information, view our Federal Vehicle Standards page.

Contact: Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, rehrmannl@c2es.org
 

2013 Climate Leadership Awards Application Period Now Open

Press Release
August 22, 2012

Contact: Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, rehrmannl@c2es.org

2013 Climate Leadership Awards Application Period Now Open

Apply NOW, due October 12

Calling national attention to exemplary leadership in response to climate change, the Climate Leadership Awards program is seeking its 2013 crop of corporate, organizational and individual leaders. Officially opening its application period, U.S. EPA and its three NGO partners -- The Climate Registry (The Registry), the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), and the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO) -- are now accepting applications for 2013 awards through October 12, 2012. EPA’s Climate Leadership Awards webpage details the application process.

Climate Leadership Award winners will be publicly honored in early 2013 at an awards gala in conjunction with the Climate Leadership Conference to be held in Washington, DC. Awards criteria have been updated, recognizing leadership in the following categories:

  • Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Setting Certificate)
    Recognizes organizations that publicly report and verify corporate GHG inventories and publicly set aggressive GHG emissions reduction goals.
  • Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Achievement Award)
    Recognizes organizations that publicly report and verify corporate GHG inventories and achieve aggressive GHG emissions reduction goals.
  • Supply Chain Leadership Award
    Recognizes organizations that have their own comprehensive GHG inventories and aggressive emissions reduction goals and can demonstrate they are at the leading edge of managing GHGs in their organizational supply chains.
  • Organizational Leadership Award
    Recognizes organizations that not only have their own comprehensive GHG inventories and aggressive emissions reduction goals, but also exemplify leadership both in their internal response to climate change and through engagement of their peers, competitors, partners, and supply chain.
  • Individual Leadership Award
    Recognizes individuals exemplifying extraordinary leadership in leading their organizations’ response to climate change and/or affecting the responses of other organizations.

Questions?

Please direct questions as follows:

Don't miss out on this unique opportunity to receive government recognition for your climate leadership and highlight your achievements and competitive edge to key stakeholders.

Dates to Remember

October 12, 2012
Deadline for 2013 CLA applications
January 2013
CLA winners notified
February/March 2013
Climate Leadership Awards Gala and Conference (dates to be announced shortly)

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About C2ES
The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting strong policy and action to address the twin challenges of energy and climate change. Launched in November 2011, C2ES is the successor to the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.

 

CBRE Group, Inc. Joins C2ES Business Environmental Leadership Council

Press Release
August 13, 2011

Contact: Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, rehrmannl@c2es.org

CBRE Group, Inc. Joins C2ES Business Environmental Leadership Council


The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) announced today that CBRE Group, Inc. has joined the C2ES Business Environmental Leadership Council (BELC) and its efforts to address the twin challenges of energy and global climate change.

“Buildings provide a huge energy efficiency opportunity, and as the global commercial real estate leader, CBRE will join other BELC members delivering effective solutions that work for the environment and the economy,” said C2ES President Eileen Claussen. “The BELC’s growth from 13 original members in 1998 to 36 today is a testament to the business community’s commitment to addressing climate change.  CBRE recognizes that this issue isn’t going away, and we commend them for taking an active role in helping to meet our climate and energy challenges.”

CBRE adopted a new environmental sustainability policy in July 2012 committing to measure and report its internal carbon footprint as well as supply chain emissions by 2013.  The company will also develop standards and policies to reduce energy and resource consumption and waste production and report those results. For areas under the company’s control, CBRE will establish annual reduction targets and verify progress through continued development of environmental management programs.  It is also taking steps to establish at least 70 percent of its corporate facilities over 20,000 square feet in space or buildings with recognized green building standards by 2017.

“Our partnership with C2ES is a reflection of our longstanding, leading environmental commitment,” says Larry Midler, CBRE’s Executive Vice President responsible for the company’s Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability programs. “At CBRE, we recognize the responsibility that comes with our industry leadership position. We look forward to engaging with C2ES and other businesses in the BELC to advance solutions related to climate change.”

The BELC is the largest U.S.-based association of corporations focused on addressing the challenges of climate change.  Launched in 1998 with 13 companies, the BELC now has 36 members representing over $2 trillion in combined revenue and more than 3.5 million employees.  Membership includes mainly Fortune 500 companies representing a diverse group of industries including energy, automobiles, manufacturing, chemicals, metals, mining, forest products, consumer goods and high technology. Individually and collectively, these companies are demonstrating that it is possible to take action to address energy and climate challenges while maintaining competitive excellence, growth, and profitability.

The BELC members are: Air Products & Chemicals, Alcoa, Alstom, American Water, AREVA, Bank of America, Bayer, BP, CBRE, Cummins, Daimler, Delta Air Lines, Dominion, Dow Chemical Company, DTE Energy, Duke Energy, DuPont, Entergy, Exelon Corporation, GE, GM, HP, Holcim, IBM, Intel, Johnson Controls, National Grid, NextEra Energy, NRG Energy, PG&E Corporation, PNM Resources, Rio Tinto, Shell, Toyota, TransAlta, and Weyerhaeuser.

For more information about global climate change and the activities of C2ES and the BELC, visit www.c2es.org.

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About C2ES
The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting strong policy and action to address the twin challenges of energy and climate change. Launched in November 2011, C2ES is the successor to the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.

About CBRE
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services firm (in terms of 2011 revenue).  The company has approximately 34,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate owners, investors and occupiers through more than 300 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide. CBRE offers strategic advice and execution for property sales and leasing; corporate services; property, facilities and project management; mortgage banking; appraisal and valuation; development services; investment management; and research and consulting. Please visit our Web site at www.cbre.com.
 

Fixing A Broken National Flood Insurance Program: Risks And Potential Reforms

Fixing A Broken National Flood Insurance Program: Risks And Potential Reforms

June 2012

by Dan Huber

Download the full brief (PDF)

Read the related blog post


The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) insures 5.6 million American homeowners and some $1 trillion in assets. For many years, however, the premiums collected have not been sufficient to cover losses, resulting in a current debt to the U.S. Treasury of more than $18 billion. A number of factors, including increased flooding as a result of climate change, are likely to further widen the gap between revenue and risk. Reforms are needed to put the NFIP on the path to solvency and to reduce homeowners’ exposure to chronic and catastrophic flooding risk. Ideally, such reforms should fully account for the increased risks posed by climate change. At a minimum, steps are needed to adjust premiums, improve flood mitigation measures, and prepare for the catastrophic risk of events like Hurricane Katrina. 
 

Introduction

With government budgets still reeling from the effects of the recent recession, and ongoing debates over the future costs of Medicare and Social Security, unfunded public liabilities are of growing concern. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is one such liability that is often overlooked. The NFIP is already significantly in debt due to premiums that have not reflected the true risk of flood damages. Looking forward, the risk of further losses only increases, as demographic trends place more infrastructure in harm’s way, watersheds are developed and climate change increases flood risk over time.[1]

This paper explores the structural issues underlying the growing gap between flood insurance premiums and actual flood risk. It also examines reforms that can put the program on a more sound financial footing and the incentives needed to reduce the potential costs of future flooding. A report by the American Enterprise Institute found that insurers have “a huge opportunity today to develop creative loss-prevention solutions.” [2] Using both adaptive and financial tools to manage the rising risks posed by climate change will be critical to preventing losses and maintaining the insurability (and therefore property values) of trillions of dollars in at-risk property assets.

Between 1980 and 2005, U.S. insurers paid out a total of $320 billion in weather-related insurance claims.[3] While not all weather-related claims are flood claims, losses from weather events are increasing.[4] Today, the NFIP covers over $1.2 trillion in assets, representing more than a fourfold increase since 1980.[5] If providing this coverage is to remain affordable, Congress must provide FEMA with the tools to accurately price and manage risk.
 

References

1. Kousky and Kunreuther, (2010, March 1). Improving Flood Insurance and Flood-Risk Management: Insights from St. Louis, Missouri. Natural Hazards Review, Vol. 11.

2. Kunreuther and Michel-Kerjan, (2009, January 15). Market and Government Failure in Insuring and Mitigating Natural Catastrophes: How Long-Term Contracts Can Help. Washington D.C., USA: American Enterprise Institute Conference on Private markets and Public Insurance Programs

3. Stephenson, John B., (2007). Financial Risks to Federal and Private Insurers in the Coming Decades Potentially Significant. Washington D.C., USA: United States Government Accountability Office

4. Kunreuther and Michel-Kerjan, Market and Government Failure in Insuring and Mitigating Natural Catastrophes: How Long-Term Contracts Can Help. Op. Cit.

5. Michel-Kerjan, Forges and Kunreuther, (2011). Policy Tenure Under the U.S. National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Risk Analysis. 

 

Daniel Huber
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