Leaders from the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) announced the sponsors who will help ensure that the summit will fulfill its pledge to meet or exceed international sustainability standards for large events.
The planning efforts to date have focused on reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of the summit as much as possible and handling those that are unavoidable—estimated at around 10,000 tons– via offsets from Yurok Tribe Project or results-based payments from The Amazon Fund.
Today it was announced that the government of Norway and Natural Capital Partners and will manage this on behalf of the Summit through initiatives that conserve forest land and store carbon in the Brazilian Amazon and California.
The Norwegian government will provide results-based payments to the Amazon Fund, rewarding Brazil’s climate mitigation efforts for reducing emissions from deforestation.
The Brazilian government, through its policies and the Amazon Fund, have been working for more than 10 years to prevent, monitor and combat deforestation as well as to promote the preservation of and the sustainable use within the Brazilian Amazon.
The effort has delivered more than 6 billion tons of emissions reductions, and the Amazon Fund has disbursed more than $422 million to date including to indigenous peoples’ groups and in support of protected areas.
Natural Capital Partners will cover the remainder emissions with the equivalent compensation paid to the Yurok Tribe Project. The Yurok Tribe Project was launched by the largest American Indian tribe in California to work to preserve almost 29,730 acres of forestland in their home of Humboldt County, California.
“It has always been the intention of the GCAS team that the event itself would not add to the already immense carbon burden this planet is facing,” said Jaime Nack, director of sustainability for the summit. “To connect a group of like-minded partners who are willing to reinforce our efforts to remain carbon neutral is exciting and inspiring, and we are so grateful for their support of the summit and its goals.”
It is well known that large events present unique environmental challenges and have the potential to consume large amounts of energy and resources. To address these challenges, the International Standards Organization (ISO) has set forth an industry standard for large events—ISO 20121—that provides a road map to a climate-friendly event. This international model prescribes a management system approach that can help any event-related organization reduce its environmental impact and become more socially responsible, while maintaining the viability of the event.
Additional ways that this event will strive to operate in a sustainable manner include:
- Curbing Waste:Organizers will take actions including recycling, composting and food donation with the goal of diverting at least 85 percent of event-related waste from a landfill.
- Locally Sourced Food: All food served during the event will be California-grown, with at least 75 percent of ingredients sourced from within 200 miles, and all dishware will be reusable.
- Reducing Transportation Emissions: Electric vehicles, including electric bicycles, will be widely available with a free ride for the entire City of San Francisco on Scoots and Ford GoBikes on Sept. 13 and free for attendees all week. In addition, the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) has curbed its greenhouse gases nearly 33 percent from 1990 levels and set targets for zero waste and zero carbon by 2021. The event will also use 100 percent electric or hydrogen fuel cell buses—the first time an event of this size is using 100 percent zero emission vehicles.
- Clean Power:The venue itself will draw its electrical power from one of the cleanest electrical grids in the world.
“As we count down the final days until this summit, we are excited to have done the work needed to bring down our carbon footprint and build on the success of previous events such as the 2012 London Olympics and the 2017 UN Climate Conference in Bonn, Germany,” said Nick Nuttall, director of communications for the Summit. “We believe we have demonstrated that the Summit is not only significantly reducing its environmental impacts but pioneering a new level of responsibility at home and abroad”.
In fact—for perhaps the first time in history for an event of this size—the Summit’s Sustainability Road Map ties each impact area back to the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals, including Goal 13, which relates to the landmark Paris Climate Change Agreement.
More than 4,000 delegates from Africa, Asia, Latin America, Europe and the U.S. will convene at the Global Climate Action Summit to announce bold new climate commitments, from green investing and higher commitments to clean energy to the electrification of transportation to zeroing in on waste, addressing forest loss, and boosting corporate and sub-national emission reduction plans. These actions will help embolden international leaders so that they can go further, beginning with the next United Nations Climate Change meeting, slated to take place in Poland this December.
About the Global Climate Action Summit
The 2018 Global Climate Action Summit, hosted in San Francisco Sept. 12 to 14, will bring together state and local governments, business and citizens from around the world to showcase climate action taking place, thereby demonstrating how the tide has turned in the race against climate change and inspiring deeper national commitments in support of the Paris Agreement.
To keep warming well below 2 degrees C, and ideally pursue 1.5 degrees C—temperatures that could lead to catastrophic consequences—worldwide emissions must start trending downward.
The Summit will showcase climate action around the world, along with bold new commitments, to give world leaders the confidence they can go even further by 2020.
The Summit’s five headline challenge areas are Healthy Energy Systems, Inclusive Economic Growth, Sustainable Communities, Land and Ocean Stewardship and Transformative Climate Investments.
A series of reports are set to be launched over the coming months and at the Summit underlining the contribution of states and regions, cities, businesses, investors and civil society, also known as “non-party stakeholders,” to national and international efforts to address climate change.
Many partners are supporting the Summit, including the Climate Group, the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), CAN International, Ceres, WWF and Mission 2020.
For more information on the Summit visit globalclimateactionsummit.org