The World Economic Forum 2013 has spawned an impressive collection of reports on the urgency of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, transforming energy systems, adapting to climate change, and making major investments to steer the global economy onto a more sustainable path that protects our natural resources.
The messages are not new; the International Energy Agency, the World Bank, UN agencies, scientists and civil-society groups have long warned about these things and made similar calls to action.
Writing in the UK-based RTCC (Responding to Climate Change), SEI Executive Director Johan L. Kuylenstierna says it’s time to stop talking – and time to act:
We know what we have to do. In Davos, could those with real power start doing it?
… Climate action can’t wait until we have spare cash, or until green technologies are cheap. Neither can sustainable resource management – water, land and key materials are already becoming scarce. Plus, as the WEF reports eloquently argue, investing in these things will strengthen, not weaken our economies.
Kuylenstierna offers four simple ideas to mobilize both business and the private sector:
For starters, stop fighting. … Second, stop blaming consumers. … Third, think longer-term. … Fourth – and this one is for policy-makers – don’t subsidize bad ideas.