How Businesses Can Innovate In Reaction to IPCC’s 1.5C Report2018-10-252019-12-24https://foodwaste.tech/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/foodwaste-tech-logo3.pngFoodwastehttps://foodwaste.tech/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/continents-earth-globe-41950.jpg200px200px
On October 8th, 2018, the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) released an updated in-depth analysis to world leaders and the public known as the special report of “Global Warming of 1.5C Report” (1.5 C Report). The report described the global climate change crisis and overwhelmingly stated that human activity is the main reason for climate change. The report warned world leaders that immediate action must be taken in order to combat catastrophic consequences due to come in the future if the current problem is not addressed. In other words, the world must lower its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to halt irreversible damage. To limit this damage, scientists coined the term “1.5 C” to describe the goal of how much humans must limit global warming too. In other words, the consequences of a 2C global average warming would bring devastating consequences that would redefine and change much of our natural world.
The current Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres confirmed the 1.5C report stating that, “Climate change is running faster than we are- and we are running out of time”. (UN NEWS)
The Birth of the IPCC
The International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) is a group of world-renowned scientists working together to provide information to global leaders and policymakers about the changing climate. It was founded in 1988 by the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to create a scientific basis for policy and to provide information about the world’s changing climate. Climate change became an official concern only in the 1980s. Since then, IPCC has been creating first-class information for governmental leaders and world policymakers.
Brief History of Policy to Limit Climate Change
Since the Cancun Agreements in 2010, (during a UN climate conference), global policy leaders made the official goal to keep the global average temperature from exceeding 2 degrees. This was when we were already beginning to see the effects of climate change. This goal was revisited at the Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany during October 2015.At this moment the United Nations presented a new report stating that they were nowhere near the goals described in the Cancun Agreements. If no action was made, future generations will suffer as lands will grow infertile, species will die off. In a very abbreviated sense, this would create a global threat, including food shortages, increased migration, natural disasters and war over resource security.
The seriousness of the problem was evident, and quick action had to take place. Shortly after, the Paris Agreementwas formed in April 2016. 195 countries signed and endorsed the document, committing themselves to more ambitious goals of limiting climate change.
This image depicts the brief timeline between the IPCC formation and the critical agreements up to the present day. Image source: IPCC
Special Report of 1.5 C
The 1.5 C report was drafted by 91 scientists and 44 nationalities worldwide. At the signing of the Paris agreement in 2016, the IPCC accepted the request to draft reporting global impacts 1.5 C changes would make on the planet. The results are somber at best. Once again, human activity has not been able to limit its global GHG emissions.
The Report was broken into five chapters and an introduction brief summary for policymakers, and a glossary at the end. In the introduction, the report describes how the world has been heating to at least one degree since before the Industrial Revolution.
“Human activities are estimated to have caused approximately 1.0°C of global warming 5 above pre-industrial levels, with a likely range of 0.8°C to 1.2°C. Global warming is likely to reach 1.5°C between 2030 and 2052 if it continues to increase at the current rate. (high confidence) (IPCC 1.5)
The 1.5 C report is broken down the following way. The report begins in a summary report to policymakers before diving into its chapters of research. The summary briefly explains the meaning of 1.5C and its importance, the risks, and threats of global warming, emission pathways, how to respond, and other core concepts. (Summary for Policymakers)
The rest of the report is broken down into the following.
How does just half of a degree within the world’s average temperature create such an important difference? It may sound small, but half a degree can help prevent extreme measures to the planet, including rising sea levels, global heatwaves, and the survival of our biodiversity including thousands of animal species, endangered coral reefs, and fighting pollution.
“With clear benefits to people and natural ecosystems, the report found that limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared to 2°C could go hand in hand with ensuring a more sustainable and equitable society. While previous estimates focused on estimating the damage if average temperatures were to rise by 2°C, this report shows that many of the adverse impacts of climate change will come at the 1.5°C mark. (UN Climate Change)
The report thus marks that climate change will already bring irreversible damage, and we will continue to see increasing problems such as extreme heat ripples, loss of species, and human food shortages.
In this graphic, the IPCC demonstrates the differences in how much different ecosystems are at risk for 2C compared to 1.5C.
Between arctic ice melting, extreme weather events and coral die-off, the stakes don’t look great. But the report highlights the important difference in devastation between 1.5C and 2C. For example, Greg Harmenreviewed the 1.5 C and wrote a short response that was included in Kelly Levin’s article called: “8 Things You Need to Know About the IPCC 1.5C Report”. He states that we should not be blinded by the environmental threats, and we still have a responsibility to act accordingly as stewards to this planet. He writes, “Holding warming to 1.5C rather than 2C will see around 420 million fewer people being frequently exposed to extreme heatwaves, the report notes”.
Part of the report calls on global response and collaboration with policymakers and leaders to create major changes in how we are using resources. World organizations have the leverage to influence global leaders and private economic superpowers to shift their market dynamics. The growing pressure is put on other business owners to make statements about climate change. To secure their corporate sustainability credit, many corporate CEOs and other world giants will be likely to comply.
“By 2050, renewables are projected to supply 70-85 percent of electricity in 1.5 ̊C pathways. Energy efficiency and fuel-switching measures will be critical for the transportation sector. Reducing energy demand and improving the efficiency of food production, changing dietary choices and reducing food loss and waste also have significant potential to reduce emission”(United Nations)
The key for businesses to innovate for the 1.5 C degree is to think of securing world climate balance as progressive and necessary for future businesses to flourish. Rather than forcing a decline to different productions, businesses must focus on progressive growth to serve future demands that will come when public scrutiny and green movements will redefine how people are consuming today. The businesses to come with the solutions to fit with new policies are bound to define the future market.
Redemption for the Auto Industry- With Hybrid Cars
For example, the EU is pushing new laws and restrictions to commit to renewable energy and lower nonrenewable shares.People will still need transportation, fuel, and technology. As laws begin to comply with the goals of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) consumers must buy more products from regulated carbon emitters.
It’s no surprise that the Auto Industry is a highlighted market under scrutinized policies. However, the industry is making a comeback with renewable methods and new products. Names such as Tesla have become global auto giants in as little a decade. In The Morning Star co, the British journal for finance wrote on October 9th, 2018 that the estimated demand increase in electric solar-powered cars such as Tesla will likely increase its sales due to reactions from the IPCC report.
“We forecast hybrids to make up 21 % of global auto sales in 2028, which would make electric vehicles and hybrids 36% of total vehicles. Our top picks to invest in growing electric vehicle adoption include Albemarle, BMW, BorgWarner, Edison International, General Motors, and SQM .-( Morning Star Equity Analysts in their article “Tesla to Benefit from IPCC Climate Change Recommendations”.)
As climate change slowly becomes more mainstream, it will change the views of innovators and redefine investing. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla made a tweet shortly after the 1.5 C Report was published in October. He comments:
Elon Musk reacts to the special report of 1.5 C just after release.
The IPCC has also made it clear that investments for renewable energies will need much more investment to reach the 1.5 C goal to avoid the consequences of a 2C temperature rise. But in doing so will we can help prevent devastating climate changes.Civilians and consumers must alter their everyday lifestyles to meet sustainable goals.
Food Demands to Change Business, and the World
Agriculture, food shortages and global diet patterns were also addressed in its contribution to global warming. Along with renewable energy, agriculture and land use are crucial problems that can also be addressed.
While writing about obvious ways to lower the global carbon footprint, Green biz compares renewable and agriculture. “Renewables must seize control to provide 70 to 85 percent of power by 2050, while energy-intensive industries will need to slash their emissions by 75 to 90 percent by mid-century, and buildings and transport also will need to shift heavily towards low-carbon models. Agriculture and land use will be another target area, with an urgent drive to boost reforestation and improve soil health to create new carbon sinks”. – GreenBiz
Image Source: FAO the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) illustrates the global dollar worth for food wasted or thrown away. Stating that in 2012 the market value for food waste (which is any food products lost or wasted) was 936 billion US dollars. (FAO)
In the above FAO illustration, different GHG emissions are compared side by side with the global food waste footprint. The basic message says that “If food wastage were a country, it would be the third-largest emitting country in the world.”(FAO).In other words, food waste is an unseen problem in comparison to the auto industry but creates a remarkable impact on society.
Individual Action Makes a Difference
One must remember that the collective difference is made not only by policy papers but as a collaborative society. Consumer trends and demands will also help defy the future market and innovations. Individual actions that can make a difference begin with weighing and measuring one’s individual carbon footprint. Weigh the number of resources different lifestyles, and try to think about sustainable choices in your everyday purchases. Large international organizations such as WWF offer questionnaires and tools to measure the individual’s carbon footprint and how to reduce it. Find your carbon footprint here.Secondly, civilian pressure on governments can push politicians to take legislative action against global warming pathways such as fossil fuels, agriculture companies. Lastly, is to take a community approach to combat climate change. Humans are incredibly innovative when placed must be reviewed as progressive rather than diminishing business or economic activity. This creates motivation, ambition, and competition in a new field.
A Future Prediction
Making this monumental shift will require substantial new investments in low-carbon technologies and efficiency. The report finds that if the 1.5˚C goal is to be met, investments in low-carbon energy technology and energy efficiency will need increase by roughly a factor of five by 2050 compared to 2015 levels.”(WRI, Kelly Lavin).
The summary of 1.5 C report to policymakers should not only regard governmental figures but also CEO’s and global corporate giants, and those running stocks on Wall Street. The climate issue is not only an environmental issue but will progress to be a monetary issue. As agents of the United Nations, bodies such as the World Bank and International Monetary Program also need to innovate towards the regulations suggested but the 1.5 C report. UN Secretary-General António Guterres issued this video just one month regarding next year’s UN campaign about climate change. But the more action must be taken by businesses. A joint collective is needed in order to create a long-lasting difference.
It’s evident that businesses and the rest of the world will have no choice but to adapt to new practices in order to keep global warming from exceeding 2C. However, this sort of action will require collaboration with government municipalities, consumers, and businesses.
Business innovation to limit climate change will react in a way that is innovation, encourages creativity, engineers and entrepreneurs. If harnessed correctly, businesses may lead the way to create immediate climate change supported by civilian and governmental demand.
The businesses that can accommodate the demands of the future will harness the future market. It’s time to see who can win the race to be green.
While You’re here…
We appreciate your time and interest in reducing your food waste amount. Food Waste Tech is committed to giving back, and we believe in making efforts to support many other efforts to better the environment. But we cannot do it without your help.
In order to support the expansion of possibilities between partners and collaborations in efforts to grow and receive partnerships for those fighting for a better world, we hope to share with you other pioneers making a difference for a better world
Food Waste Tech has identified two missions that closely resemble what we believe in. We’ve identified them as planting a tree in the Rainforests of the Amazon OR contributing to research funding on growing seaweed farms to reduce CO2 and acidity in oceans, to protect marine life.