BNP Paribas' fourth Sustainable Future Forum in Singapore explored the business opportunities and solutions needed to achieve the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 and targets agreed under the Paris Climate Agreement. But are we on track to meeting the 2030 agenda?
The climate crisis, acknowledged by many now as an emergency, could likely be the defining issue of our time, requiring large scale, immediate and unprecedented changes to how we live and do business. Addressing this will require us to throw away the notion that we can continue to conduct 'business as usual'.
BNP Paribas' flagship Sustainable Future Forum (SFF) event for clients in Asia Pacific this year tackled this topic head on and examined Asia Pacific's role in creating and solving the world's climate crisis.
This year's theme, "Solutions for a brighter tomorrow", set the backdrop for the inspiring conversations and debates between 600 influential global leaders. One consistent message about climate change has been made abundantly clear: a two-degree limitation on climate change is not sufficient and even if we could limit the increase to 1.5 degrees, the impact will still be devastating. It is clear that there is a real sense of urgency to tackle the climate crisis at all levels, but much more still needs to be done to keep temperatures rising beyond 1.5 degrees.
Tackling the climate emergency is much more than just energy transition or renewable energy. Solutions including infrastructure, transportation, smart cities, food and agriculture collectively provide bigger impact. Fulfilling these ambitions will take an unprecedented effort by all sectors in society — and businesses play a critical role in the process. Companies are increasingly taking up the SDGs, putting them into action and using them as frameworks for their business strategies. But are corporates doing enough to adjust their business models and investment decisions?
Keynote panel: Time for Action: Shifting gear in the urgency of preparation for the coming climate crisis (from left to right: Craig Leeson, Helen Clark)
Panel: In Crisis Lies Opportunity (from left to right: Dimitri Zenghelis, Joris Dierckx, Rintaro Tamaki, Geraldine Buckingham, Sue Garrard)
Panel: Keeping up the standards in the growing rainbow of sustainable capital markets products (from left to right: Marcin Bill, Nicholas Gandolfo, Sheng Ou Yong, Ellie Tang, Noemie Peiffer)
Panel: Solutions in the Circular and Digital Economy (from left to right: Vikas Garg, Cynthia Tchikoltsoff, Fanny Moritz, Chris Cui, Shilpa Gulrajani)
At BNP Paribas, the SDGs are at the heart of our business model, where the Group continues to make a difference in financing the real economy, sustainable finance, supporting entrepreneurs and young people and considering the needs of local ecosystems, regions and communities, where we are active.