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UN Climate Summit


In the run up to the UN Climate Summit, the Aldersgate Group hosted a ‘Dragons’ Den’. Business leaders answered UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s challenge to make bold pledges to close the emissions gap and deliver a low carbon economy. They pitched their solutions to a panel of dragons who challenged them to be innovative and deliver ‘game changers’. All views expressed were in a personal capacity.

People’s Climate March – join the march to make history

The winner of the audience vote was Mike Barry, Director of Sustainable Business at M&S. He said, ‘Governments should invite the big industrial sectors of the global economy to come to Paris in 15 months’ time to show how they are going to reduce by 80% the carbon in their business models, supply chains, operations and consumer use of their products.’

Quotes from the Dragons

‘We need to address demand. So I’d like to see world leaders in New York pledge to support the introduction of laws that required companies and government agencies to buy the product with the lowest embedded carbon, providing it is equivalent in its delivery, quality and whole life costs to its high carbon competitors.’

Jack Frost, Director at Johnson Matthey

‘A big statement from the Climate Summit that universal carbon pricing can both mitigate emissions and support low carbon investment, backed by heads of government, would give a major boost to those that are looking to establish their own national pricing schemes.’

Richard Folland, European Energy and Environment Advisor at JP Morgan

‘The decarbonisation of supply chains has to be started now and in conjunction with consumption based carbon accounting. We in the UK and others like us cannot export our carbon impacts, which is what we do at the moment.’

Chris Brown, Senior Director at Asda

‘Any strategic response to emissions must consider buildings. They need a plan, which means difficult conversations between governments and the population. Let’s stop selling kilowatt hours and start selling warm comfortable homes.’

Steven Heath, External Affairs Director at Knauf Insulation

‘Low carbon technology is the key to addressing climate change…And due to the high cost of abatement in CO2 emissions, market based measures will be vital to enable us to make this reduction. We need an effective global emissions trading scheme.’

Jonathon Counsell, Head of Environment at British Airways

‘The delivery of a sustainable economy is crucial to the interest of Hogan Lovell clients. And we as a global law firm need to be at the forefront of policy and regulatory initiatives.’

Louise Moore, Partner at Hogan Lovells

‘Some of you in the private sector are saying you’re in favour of more regulation. That is critical because the flavour of the day is to remove regulations.’

Sir David King, Special Representative for Climate Change at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

‘The Climate Summit is an opportunity for momentum. The vast majority of businesses, such as the many multinational players which the Aldersgate Group represents, want the summit to be a success and to put us on the road to an ambitious deal in Paris.’

Andrew Raingold, Executive Director at Aldersgate Group

‘The Summit will be a major opportunity to profile some of the best ideas of business and society in terms of tackling climate change. But if it’s going to be successful, it really needs to show stretch and take us out of our comfort zones. It has to be about taking judicious risk for extraordinary returns.’

Nick Robins, Co-Director at UNEP

‘The encouraging thing today is that everyone seemed to think about how we can get the market we’re operating in to function in a way that is consistent with addressing the market failure of climate change. But we also need government to understand that business wants them to address the market failure.’

David Nussbaum, Chief Executive at WWF

‘I think that business has a huge opportunity to show collective leadership… I urge you to put that to government.’

Sara Parkin, Founder Director at Forum for the Future

The Aldersgate Group’s mission is to trigger the change in policy required to address environmental challenges effectively and secure the maximum economic benefit in sustainable growth, jobs and competitiveness. For more information and upcoming events, visit

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