Climate change action is the top motivation for entrepreneurs amongst the UN SDGs
Entrepreneurs globally see Climate Change Action as the top priority amongst the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Entrepreneurs are ideally suited to contribute to the fight against climate change.
Entrepreneurs build, grow and manage a company, hire and nurture employees, serve clients, raise capital, establish partnerships, navigate complex networks, webs of regulations and think through careful investment strategies. Successful entrepreneurs anticipate trends and challenges, successfully deploying strategies to benefit from them. And sustainability is clearly one of the most important challenges nowadays.
In that context, in the recently released BNP Paribas Global Entrepreneur Report 2020 Part III on sustainability, entrepreneurs, and especially European entrepreneurs, clearly consider climate change a priority amongst the 17 United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our epoch and one that requires a global mobilisation to tackle effectively. Ever since the 2015 Paris agreement where countries globally agreed to pursue efforts to keep the increase in global average temperature to below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels, it is becoming a core topic at the heart of countries’ policies and corporations’ values, but also a core preoccupation for citizens globally. Furthermore, it is a cross-generational issue, impacting not only the world of today but also how the world will look like in a century.
The world is facing a complex global issue that, to be solved, will require innovations and novel perspectives. Furthermore, such a tide of global awareness about a specific issue is rare and will undoubtedly create disruptions in “business-as-usual” processes and habits.
Hence, this is the moment where the entrepreneur spirit can shine, leveraging new ways of thinking and innovations to meet the challenges and seize the opportunities created by the radical changes ahead. Indeed efficiently tackling climate change will require significant disruptions and significant societal and economic transitions. Energy will need to rely less and less on fossil fuels, transportation will become electric, real estate will become cleaner and consume less energy. The number of sectors facing drastic changes related to the fight against climate change in the next 10 to 20 years is almost limitless.
And indeed innovation is exploding, driven by creative mindsets. The past years have brought a number of innovative ideas that could play a role in the fight against climate change, with significant financing available from institutional investors ready to fund promising ideas and from governments and foundations eager to find solutions in line with the Paris agreement.
Innovations are varied. For example, there are companies deploying new carbon dioxide air capture technologies to filter CO2 from the ambient air. Others are developing and commercializing air-cooling systems leveraging new materials to reduce the energy consumption of air conditioning.
Along with this unprecedented mobilisation of businesses and citizens alike on a global level, entrepreneurs will play a key role in combating climate change.