U.S. Business Hails Paris Climate Pact’s Imminent Entry Into Force

COP 21 Paris 2015 logoNew York, N.Y., October 6, 2016 – The United States Council for International Business (USCIB), which represents American business views to the United Nations and other international bodies, applauded the crossing of a key threshold for entry into force of the landmark Paris Climate Agreement, following its ratification by a critical mass of the world’s greenhouse gas-emitting nations. Looking ahead to the next major UN climate meeting in Marrakesh next month, USCIB called on UN member governments to work with the private sector in implementing the historic pact.

“This is a major accomplishment, and it paves the way for greater cooperative action to effectively address climate change in the years ahead,” said USCIB President and CEO Peter M. Robinson. “To do so will require close collaboration between governments and the private sector, from which so many of the technological innovations and investments to deal with climate change will come. USCIB and our global business partners have contributed mightily to this effort, and we are fully prepared to ramp up business support and engagement once effective systems of private-sector consultation are put in place at the national and international levels.”

Agreed at the COP21 Summit in the French capital last December, the Paris Agreement sets out a global plan for reducing heat-trapping emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from 2020 onward, with long-term targets through the end of the century. It is built on nationally determined pledges by nearly all countries. Yesterday, the European Parliament reached consensus on EU-wide ratification, pushing the needed number of countries and collective emissions past the threshold for entry into force.

Unlike its predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris accord engages all countries in climate action under an international cooperative framework on mitigation, adaptation and resilience. It requires periodic reporting and review of governmental actions, based on a foundation of national pledges and actions, while calling on countries to set progressively more ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets at five-year intervals.

“USCIB members were on hand at COP21 in unprecedented numbers to demonstrate their commitment and stake in the accord, and we are confident that this engagement will continue,” said Robinson. “USCIB is ready to strengthen its involvement with the UN process to build long-term cooperation for practical and cost-effective results.”

In its over 20 years of involvement in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process, USCIB has emphasized that the linchpin for successful implementation will be private sector involvement at national and global levels, according to Norine Kennedy, USCIB’s vice president for environment and energy.

“Governments will look to business for technical advice, as well as finance, investment and implementation, and we are ready to step up,” Kennedy said. “Important unfinished business remains in elaborating the Paris Agreement and building its support structure, which would be made stronger with business input. In particular, the agreement will need to provide more clarity on how markets and the private sector can contribute.”

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing the International Chamber of Commerce, the International Organization of Employers, and Business at the OECD, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More information is available at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, VP communications, USCIB
+1 212.703.5043 or jhuneke@uscib.org

Global Business Encourages China to Lead on Environmental Goods Agreement

Solar-workers_3Washington, D.C., July 8, 2016 – The United States Council for International Business (USCIB) joined dozens of international business organizations in urging the Chinese government to take a leadership role in concluding an ambitious Environmental Goods Agreement (EGA) this year. A concluded EGA, which is being negotiated under the umbrella of the World Trade Organization (WTO) among 17 WTO members, including the United States and China, would eliminate tariffs on a wide range of environmental goods and technologies.

“China has taken an increasing interest in playing a global leadership role on energy and environmental issues,” USCIB and other business organizations stated in a letter to Chinese government officials on June 8. “As this year’s host of the G20, China has a golden opportunity to lead the successful conclusion of the EGA by the 2016 G20 Hangzhou summit in September.” The G20 Trade Ministers are meeting in Shanghai this weekend.

The letter notes that as the largest producer of green technologies among EGA members, China has much to gain from a concluded agreement. A recent study found that the agreement would increase China’s exports by $27 billion as well as result in substantial economic benefits linked to improved environmental quality.

“We strongly urge China to demonstrate leadership that results in the conclusion of a commercially meaningful EGA this year,” the letter stated. “A concluded agreement would promote economic growth, improve environmental outcomes and advance innovation not only in China, but also around the world.”

Read the entire letter

Read more about USCIB’s China Committee

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, VP communications, USCIB
+1 212.703.5043 or jhuneke@uscib.org

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More information is available at www.uscib.org.

At High-Level Summit, Business Representatives Urge Ambitious Climate Pact

Peter Robinson (USCIB)
Peter Robinson (USCIB)

Paris, December 9, 2015 – Private-sector representatives from around the world have endorsed the conclusion of an ambitious and comprehensive worldwide agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and strengthen resilience, while advancing energy access and security in the context of sustainable development.

Meeting today at the headquarters of the French business federation. MEDEF, company executives and business federation officials from more than 20 countries agreed on a joint declaration stating: “Climate change is a common responsibility for all stakeholders, including for businesses in every part of the world, of every sector and every size, large groups and SMEs.”

“We have a common and unified approach to this urgent challenge,” said USCIB President and CEO Peter Robinson. “Our message to governments is clear: Business needs the right policy frameworks in order to enable and incentivize the mammoth amounts of investment and innovation that will enable our global society to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. And we require a clear and recognized path to participate in ongoing discussion with the UN and with national governments as we move forward together.”

As the COP21 talks moved into its final crucial stage, the joint business statement laid out a blueprint for an effective global agreement to mobilize broad private-sector action to apply its technological know-how to effectively addressing climate change. An ambitious agreement, it said, must include transparent, fair and comparable national commitments among all parties, effective and transparent monitoring and reporting mechanisms, and the maintenance of open trade and investment regimes worldwide.

Business leaders from major developed and developing countries called on governments to remain engaged with the private sector after COP21, including through an institutionalized channel for private-sector consultation and engagement in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change process.

On Saturday, American business representatives including Robinson appealed governments to establish a mechanism for ongoing, substantive dialogue with the private sector, saying such a mechanism is essential to achieving COP21’s goal of effectively addressing global climate change.

With over twenty years’ experience of direct engagement in the UN climate process, USCIB is representing American business at COP21 in its capacity as the U.S. affiliate of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which is serving as the umbrella business coordinator in Paris, and as a member of the Business Major Economies Forum (BizMEF), which encompasses national business groups from the leading economies around the world.

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, including ICC, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
+1 212.703.5043, jhuneke@uscib.org

U.S. Business Appeals for Private-Sector Role in UN Climate Talks

L-R: Pierre Dejoux (Otis/United Technologies), Alexandra Liftman (Bank of America) and Peter Robinson (USCIB)
L-R: Pierre Dejoux (Otis/United Technologies), Alexandra Liftman (Bank of America) and Peter Robinson (USCIB)

Paris, December 7, 2015 – American business representatives gathered at the UN climate summit in Paris have appealed to governments to establish a mechanism for ongoing, substantive dialogue with the private sector, saying such a mechanism is essential to achieving COP21’s goal of effectively addressing global climate change.

The United States Council for International Business (USCIB) and the American Chamber of Commerce in France issued a joint declaration following a business briefing on December 5 that coincided with the halfway point of COP21.

The declaration stated: “Until now, business groups have been viewed as ‘observers’ at these vital UN deliberations. Yet in view of all that business does and offers, that is a misnomer. We see COP21 as a pivotal opportunity to pursue institutional innovation. New challenges require new ways of working together, which can be achieved through the recognition and expansion of partnerships, dialogue and consultation between governments and the private sector.”

The two business groups said a new business consultative mechanism would provide both long-term and short-term benefits, helping governments prioritize policies to address climate change, while allowing companies to better invest in cleaner technologies and solutions. This mechanism could provide national governments and the UN secretariat with detailed technical guidance on a range of matters, including implementation of the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) at the national and international levels.

“COP21 gives us an opportunity to develop workable solutions. These can only be found if the private and public sector work together. It is time for the UN to provide a recognized interface for business engagement so that together we build solutions that make a difference in the fight against climate change.” Pierre Dejoux (Otis/United Technologies), member of the board and representative of the Green Growth Committee at AmCham France. The Green Growth Committee, made up of representatives from large corporations, SMEs and startups, leads AmCham’s actions on climate change and sustainability issues. Through its network of committees, AmCham’s role as a business enabler focuses on facilitating exchanges amongst private sector actors and on fostering a dialogue with public authorities in France.

“Our takeaway from today is that the UN needs business,” USCIB President CEO Peter Robinson said at the meeting. “It needs a solid working relationship between business and the UN system. To be sure, business needs the UN Climate Agreement – but more importantly, the UNFCCC needs business.”

With over twenty years’ experience of direct engagement in the UN climate process, USCIB is representing American business at COP21 in its capacity as the U.S. affiliate of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which is serving as the umbrella business coordinator in Paris, and as a member of the Business Major Economies Forum (BizMEF), which encompasses national business groups from the leading economies around the world.

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, including ICC, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
+1 212.703.5043, jhuneke@uscib.org.

New Platform Showcases Business Support for UN’s 2030 Development Agenda

Business for 2030New York, N.Y., September 15, 2015 – As world leaders get set to descend on New York for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Summit, companies from the United States and around the world are lining up in support of this ambitious and far-reaching effort to transform our world.

Reflecting this commitment, the United States Council for International Business (USCIB) has launched Business for 2030, a new web portal aimed at stimulating more productive partnerships between the public and private sectors in support of the SDGs. USCIB serves as the voice of American business in the UN and other multilateral bodies, primarily through its role as the American affiliate of several global business groups, including the International Chamber of Commerce.

“We wanted to highlight concrete initiatives and partnerships that our members and partners are undertaking to support the 2030 Agenda,” said USCIB President and CEO Peter Robinson. “We believe that Business for 2030 can inspire renewed trust in the private sector, while catalyzing active, sustained business engagement in support of the SDGs.”

The Business for 2030 portal, which will be launched at a September 24 event in Midtown Manhattan, features more than 80 real-world examples of company initiatives and public-private partnerships, organized in relation to over 50 of the business-relevant SDG targets.

The initiative picks up on UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon‘s exhortation for the private sector “to take its place at the table and plot a path forward for the next 15 years, reaffirming once again that responsible business is a force for good.”

At the September 24 launch, USCIB member companies and international business representatives will engage with the broader development community to provide deeper context to a selection of the diverse examples featured on the Business for 2030 web portal. There will be special focus on the critical role of infrastructure in catalyzing progress on the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, and the need to transform partnerships globally and locally, through enhanced national development strategic planning and coordination for achieving the SDGs.

Participants at the event will include UN member state and secretariat representatives, along with corporate executives and representatives of civil society.

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
+1 917.420.0039, jhuneke@uscib.org

More on USCIB’s Corporate Responsibility Committee

Launch of Talks to Free Up Trade in Green Tech Applauded

4664_image002New York, N.Y., January 24, 2014 – The United States Council for International Business (USCIB) applauded announcement of a new initiative by the United States and key trading partners to boost trade in environmental goods and services (EGS) through the World Trade Organization. It said the positive step would build on the recent “Bali package” of trade liberalization measures as well as commitments in the APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) forum.

USCIB President and CEO Peter Robinson welcomed the announcement and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman’s continuing leadership in this area. “USCIB members agree that moving towards greener economic growth will depend on the widespread deployment of innovative technologies and management systems through more open trade, whether to address climate risks, improve food, water and energy security or offer cleaner goods to consumers in developing countries,” he said.

Robinson went on to say that, “We should seize this opportunity to liberalize trade in a strategic sector. At the same time, USCIB is strongly aware of the need to remove trade barriers for many other resources and products that are integral parts of the global supply and value chains behind EGS.”

Working with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and other international business partners, USCIB has advocated ambitious outcomes in the WTO, TPP, TTIP and APEC deliberations, and continues to highlight the benefits that multilateral trade and investment render to the U.S. economy.

USCIB urges governments to pursue initiatives that would increase the benefits offered by yesterday’s announcement via ongoing dedication to trade liberalization across the board and reaching a comprehensive multilateral agreement on climate change that involves all major emitters next year in Paris.

About USCIB: USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence.  Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world.  With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, including ICC, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

Contact: Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
+1 212.703.5043, jhuneke@uscib.org

More on USCIB’s Trade and Investment Committee

More on USCIB’s Environment Committee

Business Makes the Case for Stronger Role in UN Climate Process

4410_image001Doha, Qatar, December 7, 2012 – As the 18th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) nears its conclusion, the Major Economies Business Forum (BizMEF) – a coalition of 20 cross-sectoral business groups from six continents, including USCIB – is in dialogue with governments to develop better ways to inform the international climate deliberations.

Business and many governments view the effort as timely in light of efforts now underway to create new institutions on finance, technology and adaptation, and to begin negotiation of a new, long-term agreement.

“It is clear that business offers a deep and broad resource of expertise and information,” according to Norine Kennedy, USCIB’s vice president of environment and energy. “This can strengthen the practicality and economic viability of a comprehensive post-2020 agreement, supported by trade, investment and innovation.”

Earlier this week, the “Doha Dialogue” brought together government and business delegates to highlight the important role of business and consider ways to enhance it. The effort builds on public-private dialogues organized by Mexico and South Africa, previous COP hosts. The Doha Dialogue was convened by BizMEF with the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Dialogue is part of a larger effort by BizMEF and other business groups to work together toward a recognized channel for business to contribute its expertise and practical experience to the climate change talks.

Abdullah bin Mubarak Bin Ebood al Maadadi, Qatar’s environment minister, opened the dialogue at the Doha Hilton before a standing room-only audience that included ministers and senior officials from Denmark, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Korea, Switzerland, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations, as well as business leaders from across the globe.

Government representatives were supportive of an enhanced business role in the UN talks. “The Doha Dialogue has provided a unique opportunity to enhance business engagement in the UNFCCC process, which is necessary for climate negotiations to be practical and pragmatic,” stated Ambassador Masafumi Ishii, director general for global issues with the Japanese ministry of foreign affairs.

BizMEF spokesperson Brian Flannery said participants agreed to build on the success in the Doha session at next year’s conference of the parties. “We were delighted that ministers, negotiators and others endorsed the value that business experience and advice can bring to the international process,” he said. “We welcome the encouragement from governments and others. We will continue the dialogues to develop more effective avenues for a full range of business participation.”

USCIB’s Kennedy added: “No single entity can speak for all of the business community. What’s needed is a dedicated channel where governments can get a broad range of business views. The Doha Dialogue showed we have valuable experience to share. Now we just need to set up an architecture to make it happen.”

“Business engagement to the UNFCCC process is key for a successful solution,” said Hiroyuki Tezuka, chair of the global environmental strategy working group at the Japanese business federation KEIDANREN. “The business sector has the experience, technologies and best practices to cope with the complex issues related to climate change.”

More information on BizMEF’s membership, role is available at www.bizmef.org.

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More information is available at www.uscib.org.

More on USCIB’s Environment Committee

New Papers Examine Opportunities and Challenges of Green Growth in Global Markets

4409_image001New York, N.Y., November 30, 2012 – As the latest round of United Nations climate negotiations proceed in Doha, Qatar, newly released papers in the peer-reviewed journal Energy Economics aim to shed light on the viability of various strategies to promote green growth and green jobs.

National governments, global institutions and the business community face the challenge of finding greener paths for economic growth and commercial activity. Yet solid economic research, weighing the costs and benefits of various policy approaches around green growth and green jobs, especially in international markets, has been largely lacking.

The new series of papers, published as a special supplement to the latest issue of Energy Economics and available at www.green-dialogue.org, aims to correct this, shedding light on many aspects of the green-growth debate.  Commissioned by the educational arm of the United States Council for International Business (USCIB), the new research, from more than a dozen respected scholars, promises to inform business planning and the development of public policy around the green economy worldwide.

“As business leaders, we saw a real need for solid, empirically based analysis on the most effective green-growth policies,” said USCIB President and CEO Peter M. Robinson. “Mobilizing the private sector with the right mix of policies and incentives will be critical. For this to happen, we need sound economic research that reflects business realities as a basis for moving forward. We are delighted that so many respected authorities stepped forward to lend their expertise to this effort.

Appearing as a special supplement to Energy Economics under the heading “Green Perspectives,” the papers were commissioned as part of USCIB’s International Business Green Economies Dialogue project (www.green-dialogue.org). They provide views and perspectives on a wide range of green economy topics of importance to companies operating in global markets and to society as a whole.

Richard Schmalensee of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Richard N. Cooper of Harvard University and Charles Schultze of the Brookings Institution are among the noted experts who contributed to the special series. The ten papers in the “Green Perspectives” supplement address the following topics:

  • green growth
  • green jobs
  • green finance
  • green economic development
  • green energy options
  • green consumer information
  • green supply chain management.

“Individually and as a collection, these papers bring forward  a major foundational academic contribution to the field,” according to Brian P. Flannery, Ph.D., chair of the Green Economies Dialogue project.  “They can help to inform business decision-making and policy development as efforts continue to develop a greener, more prosperous world.”

The Green Economies Dialogue project is an initiative of the United States Council Foundation, USCIB’s educational and research arm, with support from an array of companies and private-sector organizations.  More information and links to the “Green Perspectives” papers are  available at www.green-dialogue.org. Learn more about the United States Council Foundation at www.uscouncilfoundation.org.

Publication of the “Green Perspectives” papers completes the second major phase of the Green Economies Dialogue project, which was launched in 2011 to foster discussion  and develop broad consensus around appropriate green-growth policies, including at the UN’s Rio+20 summit held earlier this year.  In the project’s first phase, dialogue sessions involving business leaders, government officials, leading academics and other stakeholders were held in Washington, Paris, Tokyo, Beijing and Brasilia.

About USCIB:

USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence.  Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world.  With a unique global network encompassing the International Chamber of Commerce, the International Organization of Employers and the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

More on USCIB’s Environment Committee

USCIB Welcomes Rio+20 Outcomes That Can Help Deliver Green Growth and Innovation for Sustainability

Rio de Janeiro, June 22, 2012 – Responding to the results of the Rio+20 Summit, the United States Council for International Business (USCIB) expressed optimism that agreements reached at the summit would pave the way for American companies to contribute to greener growth.

“While the summit has not achieved all that we wished, Rio+20 has delivered a package of pledges that, taken together, could broaden the engagement of not just governments, but also business, in sustainable development and take it to a new level,” said Norine Kennedy, USCIB’s vice president for energy and environment.

Over 120 heads of state met in Rio this week to lay out international priorities for new actions and institutions in a broad range of areas, including scaling up technological innovation, improving access to sustainable energy, and advancing sustainable consumption and production – all of these deliverables were identified by USCIB as critical to a successful and practical outcome.

The Rio+20 agreement renews the commitment of the international community to sustainable development, and reaffirms the importance of promoting an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future by engaging not just governments, but also other stakeholders and the business community.  Specifically, it provides for:

  • the launch of an international effort to frame Sustainable Development Goals, involving important partners, including business
  • the creation of a new international high level forum for sustainable development to raise the level of involvement of governments and other stakeholders, including business.

A large number of USCIB member companies attended the landmark event – more than at any previous UN environmental gathering.  They offered their expertise to negotiators and other important decision-makers gathered here, and participated in the Day of Business organized by the International Chamber of Commerce and its Business Action for Sustainable Development initiative.

USCIB, which launched the Green Economy Dialogue (GED) project last year to foster consensus among business, government and other stakeholders around green growth policies, held GED briefings in Rio, in cooperation with the Japanese and U.S. governments.  The briefings developed recommendations for globalizing green growth approaches, and explored options for public- and private-sector action and partnership.  Speakers from a wide range of companies and government representatives discussed green economy issues as substantive input to Rio+20.  They reflected the necessity of engaging all business sectors in greener growth and more sustainable practices.

USCIB Executive Vice President Ronnie Goldberg highlighted the urgent need to enact policy frameworks that will spur job creation.  “While we see the promise of job creation in new industries and sectors related directly to sustainability, reaching the full potential of greener growth will require sensible government policies to make all jobs greener,” Goldberg said at the U.S. Center Green Economies Dialogue event on June 18.

Encouraging corporate sustainability reporting was among the specific business recommendations set out in the text.  “U.S. companies will continue to explore approaches to communicate sustainability and will participate to share models of good practice in this area,” said Clifford Henry, associate director of corporate sustainable development with The Procter & Gamble Company and chair of USCIB’s Corporate Responsibility Committee.

USCIB’s Kennedy, who served as a member of the U.S. government delegation in Rio, said USCIB had represented the views of U.S. companies throughout the negotiating process.  “We underscored the importance of open trade and investment, and the need to protect intellectual property rights and proprietary information,” she said.  “We appreciate the U.S. delegation’s strong efforts to promote technological innovation in the Rio+20 outcomes.  We are pleased that governments rejected harmful provisions that called for weakening of IPRs, a reassessment of existing IPR and patent rules, or preferential access to transfer of technology.”

About USCIB:
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence.  Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world.  With a unique global network encompassing the International Chamber of Commerce, the International Organization of Employers and the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
+1 917.420.0039 (mobile), jhuneke@uscib.org

More on USCIB’s Environment Committee

More on USCIB’s Corporate Responsibility Committee

USCIB Welcomes Durban Agreement as a Turning Point in UN Framework Convention on Climate Change

Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, South Africa’s environment minister and president of the COP17 negotiations, at a post-conference press briefing.
Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, South Africa’s environment minister and president of the COP17 negotiations, at a post-conference press briefing.

New York, N.Y., December 12, 2011 – Defying low expectations and difficult circumstances, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change’s 17th Conference of the Parties, which concluded yesterday in Durban, South Africa, opens the door to a new international climate framework, with appropriate reductions and other actions from both developed and developing countries, according to the United States Council for International Business (USCIB).  The business group also said the Durban platform would set into operation new institutions for financing, adaptation and technology to address climate change.

“While it will be challenging for all major economies to construct a new international agreement, we look forward to working with governments to seek opportunities for U.S. companies to offer their insight and practical recommendations on implementation in ways that will grow economies, create jobs and advance sustainable development,” stated USCIB President and CEO Peter Robinson.

USCIB, which represents American business in global policy deliberations and works to expand trade and investment, applauded U.S. efforts at COP17 to promote enabling frameworks for technological innovation that protect intellectual property rights protection, and engage the private sector’s expertise and resources, as well as its commitment to advancing transparency and private-sector engagement in the new architecture.

USCIB was represented in Durban by Norine Kennedy, vice president for energy and environment, and executives from a number of member companies.  It highlighted the need for integrated solutions that promote energy access and security, while deploying technologies and market approaches to address climate risks, since U.S. businesses doing business in international markets need long-range predictability and stability to plan, invest and operate.

USCIB has encouraged countries to pursue more deliberative and effective ways to interact with business in the design and implementation of new UNFCCC institutions and measures since Cancun.  USCIB is the U.S. affiliate of the International Chamber of Commerce, which has long served  as the business focal point in the climate negotiations, and also participates in the Major Economies Business Forum (BizMEF), which prepared six position papers for Durban (available by clicking here).

Ms. Kennedy said of the Durban platform:“It seems that governments are coming to face the reality of a world that has changed in many ways since the Kyoto Protocol was signed in 1997.  The challenge now is to set the stage for a long-term agreement that involves all major emitters, engages the public and private sectors, and works with globalized markets, in harmony with trade and investment rules.”

About USCIB
USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and prudent regulation.  Its members include top U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world.  With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment.  More at www.uscib.org.

Contact:
Jonathan Huneke, USCIB
(212) 703-5043, jhuneke@uscib.org

More on USCIB’s Environment Committee

USCIB Green Economies Dialogue website