Accelerating climate action | Daily News

Accelerating climate action

Wind turbines along the strait that separates Denmark from Sweden, seen from the Amager Strandpark in Copenhagen.
Wind turbines along the strait that separates Denmark from Sweden, seen from the Amager Strandpark in Copenhagen.

This article is written with the country experiencing a heat wave along with struggles to maintain hydro power. We really must try to move away from reactive measures to proactive action. We traditionally spend vast sums of money dealing with relief post disasters. What follows are examples showing the world is combating the effects of climate change.

Copenhagen wants to show how cities can fight Climate Change

Copenhagen aims to be net carbon neutral, meaning it plans to generate more renewable energy than the dirty energy it consumes. Frank Jensen, Mayor of Copenhagen, home to 624,000 people, says, cities “can change the way we behave, the way we are living, and go more green.” In the case of Copenhagen, that means changing how people get around, how they heat their homes, and what they do with their trash. The city has already cut its emissions by 42 percent from 2005 levels, mainly by moving away from fossil fuels to generate heat and electricity.

Mr. Jensen, for his part, is bullish on what he calls the capital’s “green transformation.” City officials say this is only the start. A new Metro line, scheduled to open this year, will put the vast majority of the city’s residents within 650 metres, a bit less than half a mile, of a station. Bicycle paths are already three lanes wide on busy routes for the whopping 43 percent of Copenhageners who commute to work and school by bike — even on wet, windy days, which are plentiful.

Buildings are heated, in part, by burning garbage in a new high-tech incinerator — what garbage there is to burn, that is, considering that every apartment building now has eight separate recycling bins. For every unit of fossil fuels it consumes, Copenhagen intends to sell units of renewable energy. The city has invested heavily in wind turbines.

The city recently opened a $660 million incinerator. Every day, 300 trucks bring garbage to be fed into its enormous furnace, including trash imported from Britain. That has a carbon footprint, too. But the chief engineer, Peter Blinksbjerg, pointed out that instead of going into a landfill, the rubbish of modern life is transformed into something useful: heat for the city’s long, cold winters.

Today, even on wintry, wet days, commuters move along a busy bike highway that connects the warrens of the oldest part of the city, where some buildings date to the 1400s, to the northern neighbourhoods, whizzing past the stately apartment blocks that overlook the lake.

Forum in focus

The World Economic Forum Climate Project is using the Forum platform and global network to launch the multistakeholder action needed to achieve market-led, low-carbon and climate-resilient growth.

The Climate Project - is supporting two critical networks taking climate action. The Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders is an informal network of leading CEOs committed to ensuring private sector support for climate work. These 79 CEOs believe in global climate action.

The Friends of Climate Action - is a multistakeholder platform that brings together public and private non-state organisations, providing informal coordination, collaboration and knowledge sharing to help deliver global climate action.

System Initiative Shaping the Future of Environment and Natural Resource Security - The System Initiative on Shaping the Future of Environment and Natural Resource Security aims to find new ways to protect and value the global environmental commons. It does this by convening leading experts, innovators, investors, businesses, policymakers and civil society to support interventions that flip existing norms to create systemic change that reverses negative environmental trends.

2030 Water Resources Group - The 2030 Water Resources Group is a unique public-private-civil society collaboration. It facilitates open, trust-based dialogue processes to drive action on water resources reform in water stressed countries in developing economies. The ultimate aim of such reforms and actions is to close the gap between water demand and supply by the year 2030.

Accelerating Sustainable Production - The Accelerating Sustainable Production project serves as a guide for optimising the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution in production, helping countries and businesses achieve sustainable growth and contribute toward the achievement of the UN SDGs.

Global Battery Alliance - Mobile technology and a low-carbon future are unthinkable without batteries, a core technological enabler of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. However, there are enormous costs. First, raw materials needed for batteries are extracted at a high human and environmental toll. This includes, for example, child labour, health and safety hazards in informal work, poverty and pollution. Second, a recycling challenge looms over the eleven million tonnes of spent lithium-ion batteries forecast to be discarded by 2030, with few systems in place to enable reuse and recycling in a circular economy for batteries. Meanwhile, inappropriate lead-acid battery recycling causes severe health risks to millions globally. Third, significant innovation potential remains unexploited along the value chain to ensure that batteries fulfill their promise for sustainable development. The Global Battery Alliance seeks to address these challenges

Climate Initiative - the Climate Initiatives Platform (CIP). This portal collects, shares and tracks information on international cooperative climate initiatives driven by non-state actors such as businesses and cities, often with support from national states. More than 50 data points are open for each initiative.

Oil and Gas Climate Initiative - OGCI is a voluntary CEO-led initiative taking practical actions on climate change. OGCI members leverage their collective strength to lower carbon footprints of energy, industry, transportation value chains via engagements, policies, investments and deployment.

The Joint Ocean Commission Initiative (Joint Initiative) - is a bipartisan group of senior leaders from industry, academia, and civil society, as well as former senior government officials, who represent diverse ocean and coastal interests. The Joint Initiative recommends actions the Trump Administration and Congress should implement to effectively manage America’s vast ocean, Great Lakes, and coastal resources to ensure a vibrant and healthy future. The actions are organized into nine priority areas the Trump Administration and Congress should tackle over the next four years.

The Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy - PACE- was launched in 2017 as a public-private collaboration, co-chaired by the CEO of Philips, the heads of the Global Environment Facility and UN Environment, with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, the International Resource Panel, Circle Economy and Accenture Strategy as knowledge partners. The World Economic Forum hosts and facilitates the Platform.

The Global Water Initiative works to improve water management policies, research, investment and knowledge resources for sustainable agricultural production and improved food security. They advocate globally and support specific action research in Central America, East Africa and West Africa. They bring together complementary resources and expertise from partner organisations including CARE, CRS, IIED and IUCN, and work in collaboration with governments and local stakeholders in the regions we work. Fourth Industrial Revolution for the Earth- With support from the MAVA Foundation, PwC and Stanford University, this project seeks to harness that potential with solutions against the most pressing environmental challenges, identifying and addressing related governance issues, and identifying and mobilising the critical ingredients that will enable 4IR solutions to scale.

Core components:

* Insight series – an agenda-shaping series of issue and technology-based insight papers that become a consolidated publication in the medium term.

* Stanford dialogues – a series of face-to-face and online dialogues focused on identifying the critical issues, informing the insight series, and building a community of purpose

* Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution – In collaboration with governments and other partners, co-design and test policy frameworks and governance protocols needed to accelerate the societal benefits of, and mitigate the risks from, technology for the environment. Initial work streams include renewable energy, weather data and resilience, and oceans.

* Accelerator Platform – Development a public-private accelerator that pools and deploys public- and private-sector funds to scale up Fourth Industrial Revolution solutions. This includes building a multi stakeholder community of purpose collaborating to help accelerate and scale 4IR innovations for the environment.

* The Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 (TFA 2020) is a global public - private partnership in which partners take voluntary actions, individually and in combination, to reduce the tropical deforestation associated with the sourcing of commodities such as palm oil, soy, beef, and paper and pulp.

* Science-Based Targets for the Global Environment Commons - The project on Science-Based Targets for the Global Environment Commons aims to continue building on this momentum to create a broader movement that will extend specific science-based target approaches from climate change to water, land, and other issues.

* The New Plastics Economy: Catalysing action- The report provides a clear action plan, endorsed by over 40 industry leaders, for the global plastics industry to design better packaging, increase recycling rates, and introduce new models for making better use of packaging.


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