Sandrine Dixson-Decleve: Policymakers at COP21, don’t forget a long-term goal is essential for business

Ilario D'Amato
11 December 2015

Sandrine Dixson-Declève, The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group (CLG)

PARIS: This week at COP21 in Paris, The Climate Group’s Climate TV spoke to Sandrine Dixson-Declève, the Director of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group (CLG), about what business is keen to see come out of the agreement which will unfold over the next 12 hours.

The CLG brings together 23 global companies with combined revenues of US$170 billion, which has given Sandrine Dixson-Declève the evidence she needs to know businesses are looking for an ambitious, long-term agreement from Paris.

“Business wants to see both at the international level and also at the national level some real clear direction in terms of moving toward a low carbon economy and I think at the international level what we're calling for is really to make sure that negotiators don't give up on the long-term goal.

“Whether it be carbon neutrality or climate neutrality” we must have “a very clear deadline well before the end of the century” she affirms, urging that in some national jurisdictions such as at the European level we should be aiming for 80-95% greenhouse gas emission reductions by 2050.

“We recognize that some regions are going to be able to go faster and further, and others will not be able to in the same timeline – and that we’re to open to as long as we have a clear distinction in regulation.”

Talking about the leadership shown by business and governments at Paris over the last fortnight, Sandrine Dixson-Declève says “now we're getting into the real nitty-gritty of what does a text have to look like in order for the business community or other governments to be content, that's where it becomes more difficult and that's why we're here.

“Businesses do have a new ‘business as usual’ and that means that decarbonization is part of our long-term goal. It is part of the way we want to go forward and to make sure the policymakers don't forget that a long-term goal is essential.”

Sandrine Dixson-Declève also urges “five year cycles and ambition in order to meet that long-term goal” as well as carbon pricing, something that has been clearly on the radar of non-state actors.

“The business community has been asking for market mechanisms like carbon pricing and also fossil fuel subsidy reform, and I would say there's been a great deal of concentration on the importance of carbon pricing for the business sector in order to really start to be able to move and transition toward a low carbon economy.”

Success coming out of Paris to the Diector is firstly a “long-term goal, ensuring that we actually have a date let linked to that long-term goal in five year cycles so continuously rethinking and reporting an ambition – and all governments at the same time in order to meet that long-term goal."

She concludes: “Most importantly we want to make sure that we unlock that hundred billion a year in finance for emerging economies that need it most so that we can also leverage private finance.” 

  • You can watch more of our exclusive video interviews with climate leaders and experts by following the hashtag #ClimateTV on social media.
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