As world policy leaders gather at COP17 in Durban, KPMG International in cooperation with key international organizations, UN Global Compact, World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) announced today the launch of a global summit, Business Perspective on Sustainable Growth: preparing for Rio+20, to facilitate business solutions to the sustainability challenge.
Yvo de Boer, KPMG’s Special Global Advisor on Climate Change and Sustainability and former Executive Secretary to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change said the business community is critical to the success of future measures on sustainable development and therefore imperative that its voice is heard.
My recent discussions with business leaders around the world have found a growing frustration over the lack of certainty and policy direction on what is both the biggest challenge and opportunity for business; sustainability.
“The COP17 gathering in Durban is the next formal step towards Rio+20. We felt the business world needed something between these significant policy changing events, bringing the private and public sectors together for a dialogue on practical business solutions for sustainable growth. It is hoped that KPMG’s Summit will provide this forum, with its outcomes to be delivered to the Rio+20 delegates for consideration,” said Mr de Boer.
The summit will be opened by Ban Ki-moon, the UN Secretary-General and will feature prominent speakers including CEOs, leading policy makers from key governments from around the world and heads of international institutions, to help spark interactive debates and thematic discussions on the key challenges between business and political leaders.
Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact said business must play a critical role if we are to advance sustainable development on a broad, global scale.
“In the lead-up to Rio+20, we must seize every opportunity to make the voice of business heard and to demonstrate that green growth is possible and within reach. Business Perspective on Sustainable Growth will be an important milestone along the way, as it allows us to showcase innovations and practical solutions that underscore how companies everywhere can deliver long-term value in financial, social and environmental terms," said Mr Kell.
Bjorn Stigson, President of the WBCSD said the WBCSD was conceived two decades ago to represent the voice of business at the original Rio summit.
“The WBCSD is gearing up to represent its members in 2012. Business Perspective on Sustainable Growth will provide a valuable forum to help align the business messages we will take to Rio,” said Mr Stigson. Achim Steiner, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme said: “When world leaders meet in Rio next year, the voice of business will be important. Its capacity to assist nations in moving towards a green economy is significant. But to succeed, we need a new quality of dialogue on how public policy and markets can interact more effectively in transforming our economies.”
Ted Senko, CEO of KPMG’s Global Climate Change and Sustainability Practice said the calibre of business and policy leaders such as Summit partners from WBCSD, UN Global Compact and UNEP, as well as Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever; Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy and Hugh Grant, CEO of Monsanto among others, have shown interest to speak at this event.
“Together, this will enable us to explore specific policy options and business solutions for sustainable growth across the world”, Mr Senko concluded.
KPMG’s Global Business Summit will take place at the Sheraton Hotel, New York City from the 14 to 16 February 2012.
Global Media Relations Director
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About KPMG’s Global Climate Change & Sustainability Practice
KPMG’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CC&S) professionals provide sustainability and climate change assurance, Tax and Advisory services to organizations to help them apply sustainability as a strategic lens to their business operations. We have more than 25 years experience working with leading businesses and public sector organizations which has enabled us to develop extensive relationships with the world's leading companies and to contribute to shaping the sustainability agenda.
KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. We operate in 150 countries and have 138,000 people working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.