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New Members, New Initiatives: Forging Ahead to the Low Carbon Economy

Date
20 March 2008

The past month saw both Dell and Standard Chartered Bank announce their membership of The °Climate Group. These newest members join the likes of Bloomberg L.P., Dow, Florida Light and Power and Goldman Sachs, all of which have signed on in the last three months. The °Climate Group now counts 46 members in its ranks; the new additions promise to add substantively to the scope and the reach of our solutions building network.

Standard Chartered joins The °Climate Group as the next step in its evolution as a leader on climate change in the financial sector. Standard Chartered has committed to extend its financial leverage to the low carbon economy; the group has integrated sustainable climate concerns into its finance and lending strategies so as to help finance those products and innovations that will grow low carbon markets. It has also shown its commitment to tackle climate change in other areas: Standard Chartered has pledged through the Clinton Global Initiative to finance US$8-10 billion for new renewable and clean energy projects in Asia, the Middle East and Africa over five years. In addition, it has established the Greatest Race on Earth: Race for a Living Planet, a globally-run relay marathon that raises both awareness and funds for environment conservation in select countries. Standard Chartered has also committed to significantly reduce per capita emissions across its own operations.

  • Dell made industry headlines this February as it became the first computer company to join The °Climate Group. Chris Walker, US Director of The °Climate Group, recognized the powerful implications of Dell's partnership saying: "Dell revolutionized the PC business, and we believe it can do similarly great things for the IT industry's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions." As the first IT company to join the Carbon Disclosure Project's Supply Chain Leadership Collaboration, Dell brings to The °Climate Group a strong commitment to stimulate energy efficiency and innovation across its product lines and throughout its supply chain, while educating suppliers and consumers to maximise these. Dell has also committed to leadership by example; the company, whose carbon intensities are among the lowest of the Fortune 50, has pledged to reduce these an additional 15 per cent by 2012 and to make all company facilities, manufacturing operations and business air travel carbon neutral in 2008. Current members, meanwhile, continue to exhibit strong leadership on the path to the low carbon economy. Several have recently announced exciting new innovations and initiatives in the fight against climate change.
  • BT this January unveiled a new line of energy-efficient home phones. These are the first in a range of energy-efficient phones that BT will introduce this year: the company has pledged to see increased energy efficiency across 90 per cent of its entire retail phone range by July 2008. Using forecast product sales BT estimates that the replacement of its current phone range with the greener phones could cut {CO2} emissions some 195,000 tonnes within three years.
  • South Australia's Premier Mike Rann this February announced that the SA government would be carbon neutral by 2020. By 2010, the state government plans to offset 30 percent of greenhouse emissions by purchasing GreenPower and the balance through the purchase of other carbon offsets; by 2020, it aims to offset all of its emissions, thereby achieving complete carbon neutrality, through purchasing an equal amount of GreenPower and other carbon offsets.
  • Virgin Airlines made headlines at the end of February as it launched the world's first commercial jet flight powered partly by biofuels . The successful London-Amsterdam flight shows there exists potential for reducing the carbon footprint of the airline industry and gives fresh impetus to the search for alternative fuels.

Finally, this past month The °Climate Group received an exciting boost to it efforts to help facilitate and progress such climate-friendly innovations. The Dutch National Postcode Lottery announced that it would award The Climate Group ?1.5million in funding. The gift from Holland's largest charitable lottery will fund Climate Group research in regional and state leadership and innovations in the fight against climate change over the next three years.

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