ENERGY TRANSITION & CLIMATE CHANGE SOLUTIONS: July 25, 2020

WEEKLY QUOTE:

Wind turbines and solar panels produced 22% of Europe’s electricity in the first half of this year, rising from 13% in 2016—quite a rise in just four years. I’d say that’s pretty cool progress. It’s also exciting that they are replacing the dirtiest fuel, coal.

Dave Jones Electricity Analyst, EMBER

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Main Headline:

Paul Polman: ‘Businesses cannot succeed in societies that fail’

As people across the United States and the world grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial justice, the business community has an integral role to play in both the dialogue and the solutions to these social issues. Last week, former Unilever CEO Paul Polman urged business leaders to be courageous in their response.

“What COVID has done is a few things that we weren’t really able to get across until then. COVID has made clear that there cannot be healthy people on an unhealthy planet,” said Polman during his webcast conversation with Joel Makower, co-founder and executive editor of GreenBiz. “People are understanding how much more the relationships between biodiversity, climate, inequality — may I add racial tension to that? And I think it is not surprising that more people are asking now for a more holistic solution.”

He noted that citizens, employees and executives alike want better solutions. Polman is co-founder and chairman of Imagine, a “for-benefit” organization and foundation, which he started in 2019 with Valerie Keller, CEO for the organization; Jeff Seabright, former chief sustainability officer of Unilever; and Kees Kruythoff, chairman and CEO of the Livekindly Company. Imagine’s mission is to mobilize business leaders to tackle climate change and global inequality. 

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