UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP-25)

UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP-25)

December 2-13

Santiago, Chile

Parque Bicentenario Cerrillos (ex aeropuerto de Santiago)

The COP decided at its 24th session that COP 25 will take place in Chile.The pre-sessional period will be November 26 – December 1, 2019. COP 25 / CMP 15 / CMA 2 will be organized at Parque Bicentenario Cerrillos (ex aeropuerto de Santiago) in Santiago de Chile.

BSR Conference 2019

BSR Conference 2019

November 12 – 14, 2019

San Jose, California

The annual BSR Conference is one of the longest-running and most well-regarded sustainability conferences, providing a space for thought-provoking conversations to identify solutions to the most complex global challenges. The Conference convenes more than 800 participants from around the world, including senior executives from Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurs, foundations, nonprofit organizations, and governments.

For more information contact Mia Lauter (mlauter@uscib.org).

United Nations Climate Action Summit 2019

United Nations Climate Action Summit 2019

September 23, 2019

New York, NY

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will convene a summit to mobilize political and economic energy at the highest levels to advance climate action that will enable implementation of many of the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The UN 2019 Climate Summit will convene on the theme, ‘Climate Action Summit 2019: A Race We Can Win. A Race We Must Win.’ It will seek to challenge states, regions, cities, companies, investors and citizens to step up action in six areas: energy transition, climate finance and carbon pricing, industry transition, nature-based solutions, cities and local action, and resilience.

In preparation for the Summit, nine coalitions have been established in order to ensure transformative outcomes, according to a briefing for Member States.

The Summit will build on the outcomes of the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS), the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 73) and the 24th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 24) to the UNFCCC, among others.

The Climate Action Summit 2019 will take place the same week as the 2019 High-level Dialogue on Financing for Development (FfD) and the first HLPF meeting under UNGA auspices opens, among other high-level discussions and in parallel to the opening of the 74th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 74).

USCIB All In Initiative

USCIB All In

About

Faced with the urgent need to make faster and smarter progress towards achieving the ambitions of a range of international agreements including the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the UN Framework on Climate Change and its Paris Agreement, inclusive multilateralism is essential. In this context, USCIB has developed a 2 year initiative: “Campaign All In.”

All In has launched a global conversation on how to strengthen dialogue, partnership and engagement with business to advance implementation of 2015 outcomes via the multilateral system. The Campaign brings together policymakers and global businesses in key UN cities to begin a conversation on opportunities for harnessing the power of all industry sectors to achieve the SDG goals and other sustainability initiatives.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet speaks at the All In Roundtable

Campaign All In was launched during a roundtable event on May 8, 2019 in which USCIB partnered with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the International Organization of Employers (IOE) to convene the first All In Roundtable on Inclusive Multilateralism, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Business. Further ‘All In’ roundtables are planned for Bangkok on June 11 and in New York in July. Together, the three roundtables will address six key themes:

  1. Enabling Public-Private Partnerships with the UN for the SDGs (Geneva)
  2. More than the sum of the parts: Leveraging public private cooperation in science and technology for the SDGs (Geneva)
  3. Using Value Chains to mobilize multi-sector engagement and synergy for the SDGs (Bangkok)
  4. Economic Empowerment and inclusion to catalyze SDG impact (Bangkok)
  5. Investing in Infrastructure in all its forms for the SDGs (NYC)
  6. Measuring and Mainstreaming Impact of Private Sector Engagement on SDGs (NYC)

Utilizing the outcomes from the 2019 discussions, All In will develop a 2020 Action Plan for Inclusive Multilateralism.

Events

Geneva Week roundtable

Upcoming:

  • Bangkok Roundtable
    • When: June 11th, 2019 from 2:00 – 5:00 PM, followed by a reception
    • Where: UN ESCAP in Bangkok, Thailand
    • Registration: Available here
  • High Level Political Forum Roundtable
    • Details TBC
  • UN General Assembly Conference
    • Details TBC

Past:

*Events are based on invite only

 

US Business Launches ‘All In’ Initiative to Advance Business Engagement for Global Goals Implementation

Geneva Week roundtable

USCIB partnered with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the International Organization of Employers (IOE) to convene the first ‘All In’ Roundtable on Inclusive Multilateralism, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Business. USCIB’s ‘All In” Initiative seeks to launch a global conversation on how to strengthen dialogue, partnership and engagement with business to advance implementation of 2015 outcomes.

Over fifty participants from Geneva-based diplomatic missions, UN bodies, NGOs and business joined the event, including:

  • UN High Commissioner on Human Rights Michelle Bachelet
  • Charge d’Affaires, ad Interim, of the U.S. Mission to the United Nations and Other International Organizations Mark Cassayre
  • Secretary General of the International Labor Organization (ILO) Guy Ryder
  • Secretary General of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Mukhisa Kituyi
  • UK Ambassador to the UN in Geneva Julian Braithwaite
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet speaks at the All In Roundtable

Expert panelists from the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO),UNICEF, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the UN Global Compact and the Partnering Initiative reflected on two themes that were raised in All In Discussion Starter papers:

Public Private Partnerships with the UN – Designing for SDG impact

Leveraging public private sector cooperation on technical and scientific knowledge for targeted SDG implementation

“The event highlighted the diverse variety of working arrangements to engage with non-state actors and the private sector,” said USCIB Vice President for Strategic International Engagement, Environment and Energy Norine Kennedy. “Through the “All In” initiative USCIB will draw on its long experience in the multilateral system to highlight what has worked well and to flag areas where further partnership, improvement and strengthening are needed to speed up and scale SDG impact. “

Further ‘All In’ roundtables are planned for Bangkok and other UN cities, on additional themes, including metrics for impact, infrastructure investment for SDG action and economic empowerment and inclusion. Based on this series of discussions throughout 2019, ‘All In’ will develop a 2020 Action Plan for Inclusive Multilateralism.

The ‘All In’ roundtable took place in conjunction with USCIB’s second annual Geneva Week, May 6-9.

USCIB Geneva Week Highlights US Business Priorities for Inclusive Multilateralism

USCIB Geneva Week delegation

A delegation of USCIB members joined USCIB’s second annual Geneva Week May 6 – 9 to highlight U.S. business priority issues, underscore USCIB’s continuing commitment to engage constructively in the multilateral system and advance U.S. innovation and partnership for the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). USCIB also held its public launch of the ‘All In’ Initiative in Geneva on May 8, with a luncheon and roundtable discussion on inclusive multilateralism, SDGs and business.

USCIB Geneva Week provided an opportunity to discuss with diplomatic missions and UN entities enhanced access to intergovernmental organizations and to foster increased engagement between the public and private sectors. Geneva Week included meetings with representatives from the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as bilateral meetings with a range of national missions, including the United States, Brazil, Ethiopia and Japan. The USCIB delegation was welcomed by the Director General of World Intellectual Property Rights Organization (WIPO) Francis Gurry and took part in a series of thematic briefings and discussions with other WIPO officials.

USCIB’s Geneva Week delegation included representatives from AB InBev, Bayer, BIO, Cargill, The Coca-Cola Company, Ferrero, Mastercard, and PepsiCo. USCIB Vice Presidents Norine Kennedy and Mike Michener, Senior Director for Membership Alison Hoiem and Policy and Program Assistant Mia Lauter supported the group in meetings throughout the course of the week.

Members also joined a Geneva Business Dialogue at the World Trade Organization (WTO), hosted by theInternational Chamber of Commerce (ICC), ICC Switzerland and USCIB.  Joining a panel of speakers from the government of Switzerland and the EU Mission were private sector representatives from Nestle, Novartis and Ab InBev to highlight opportunities to create shared value using the SDGs as a framework.

Senior Vice President of Ferrero U.S.A. Gerald Kunde, who also chaired the delegation, was pleased with the outcome. “The USCIB team did an amazing job organizing and executing Geneva Week and the ‘All In’ Roundtable,” said Kunde. “Relationships are at the heart of our business. This year’s program advanced existing relationships, established new ones and greatly enhanced the private sector’s commitment to inclusive multilateralism.”

“Connecting members to key multilateral leaders and representatives of member states in important UN cities like Geneva is a fundamental part of USCIB’s policy work,” said Michener.  “We are very satisfied with the both the level and content of our engagement this week, and grateful to our members for their interest and active participation.”

USCIB will prepare a summary report of USCIB Geneva Week meetings for members and will begin to plan follow-up meetings for relevant committees with the Administration to consider next steps.

USCIB Geneva Week-Business in Society: Shared Values

USCIB will hold its second annual Geneva Week trip for members and prospects May 6-10, 2019 under the theme: “Business in Society: Shared Values.” 

USCIB is pleased to announce that meetings with the following organizations are now confirmed: U.S. Mission, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Trade Organization (WTO). Additional meetings will be confirmed in the coming weeks. Please check this page for updates.

The purpose of Geneva Week is to generate valuable conversations and connections between the U.S. business community and UN Agencies, Missions to the UN-Geneva, and other important Permanent Representatives in Geneva. It is a week-long opportunity to:

  • highlight your company’s work and policy priorities in the areas of health care, intellectual property, nutrition and sustainability;
  • demonstrate business’ commitment and contributions towards shared goals; and
  • raise any key concerns you may have regarding the intersection of international policy making and global business.

USCIB’s targets for interactions include senior management from several Geneva-based UN Agencies and Permanent Missions, including:

Agencies Include:

  • The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
  • The World Health Organization (WHO)
  • UN Environment’s Chemicals and Wastes division

Missions Include:

  • U.S. Mission to the UN
  • Australian Mission to the UN
  • Brazilian Mission to the UN
  • Canadian Mission to the UN
  • EU Mission to the UN
  • Japanese Mission to the UN
  • UK Mission to the UN

Our desired outcome from the week is to build and strengthen relationships in support of continued and ongoing communication between Geneva-based institutions and the business community, as well as to ensure that UN Agencies and Missions clearly understand:

  • Our shared values – how and where the synergies and areas of cooperation exist between business and multi-lateral institutions – and
  • Our concerns regarding business access and business’ license to operate

Participation in USCIB’s Geneva Week is by invitation only, and costs a fee of $750.00. As spaces are limited, please contact Mia Lauter (mlauter@uscib.org) to RSVP or to receive more information.

USCIB Briefs Members on New Business and Society Initiatives 

L-R: Tom Woods (Wilton Park Foundation) and Mike Michener (USCIB)

USCIB held a special briefing on April 8 in Washington, DC with leading members, USCIB staff and the U.S. Department of State focusing on how USCIB is responding to challenges in the multilateral system around business and society.

Over thirty participants attended the briefing, hosted by USCIB member Beveridge and Diamond, including Director of the Office of Economic and Development Affairs from the U.S. Department of State Margy Bond, President of Woods International and Chairman of the Wilton Park USA Foundation Tom Woods and USCIB President and CEO Peter Robinson. USCIB members in attendance included representatives from AT&T, Bayer, Cargill, Chevron, DHL Express, KPMG, McDonald’s and PepsiCo, among others.

Bond, who gave a keynote address, noted that USCIB members have been a driving force for constructive business engagement at the United Nations and emphasized that the U.S. government is focused on enhancing private sector involvement at and partnerships with the UN, which will not only help achieve global goals but also help promote growth and create jobs in the United States.

However, as business is expected to step up and provide the investment, innovation and capacity to scale solutions that can solve the world’s largest problems, USCIB members find themselves increasingly in the cross-hairs as anti-business sentiment continues to find traction among policymakers, NGOs and UN entities around the world.

“Our overriding concern is to promote trust and partnership between governments, international organizations and the private sector,” said Robinson. “All too often in recent years, we have seen the public and private sectors set against each other in international forums. We need to move beyond this, so that we can, together, tackle important global challenges like climate change, public health and nutrition, human rights and many others.”

With regards to trust, another value add to this meeting was an overview of the 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer by Edelman Intelligence Managing Director  Kari Butcher. Butcher gave insight into the findings of this year’s report and how business can use the data in the report to move forward on solving today’s societal challenges.

Participants had the opportunity to discuss and learn about three new initiatives launched by the USCIB Foundation to respond to these challenges, as well as opportunities for greater engagement through USCIB. These new initiatives are designed to strengthen the pivotal role business plays in furtherance of the 2030 Agenda with regards to nutrition-related SDGs, inclusive engagement of business in key UN forums, and the private sector’s role as a trusted partner in meeting the challenges facing society.

Norine Kennedy, who leads USCIB’s international strategic engagement and USCIB’s All in Campaign emphasized that, “the private sector brings value to the United Nations system. Its success is our success.”

The initiatives that were presented to members include:

  • Together for Nutrition Principles– a joint project between The USCIB Foundation, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), and the Wilton Park Foundation defining a set of principles for public-private sector engagement to advance the nutrition-related SDGs.
  • All In Campaign– an initiative bringing policymakers and global businesses together in key UN cities to begin a global conversation on opportunities for inclusive engagement with businesses from all industry sectors as essential to meeting the SDG goals and other 2015 outcomes.
  • Business in Society: A Crisis of Trust – a USCIB Foundation project that aims to better understand and influence attitudes and behaviors among policymakers through data, analysis and education to demonstrate that business can be profitable and still be trusted partners in meeting societal challenges.

Moving forward, all of the above will be highlighted in USCIB’s 2nd Annual Geneva Week May 6-10, the first All In Campaign Roundtable scheduled to take place in Geneva during Geneva Week, a planned event on the impact of business SDG partnerships on the margins of the High Level Political Forum in July in New York, as well as additional planned All In Campaign roundtables in cities around the world.  USCIB encourages members to participate and welcomes feedback.

Business & Society – Creating Shared Values: USCIB Responds

April 8, 2019
1p.m. – 4:30p.m.
(reception to follow)

Beveridge & Diamond, P.C.
1350 Eye Street, NW
Washington, DC

USCIB will hold a special briefing featuring conversations among USCIB staff and leading members on how USCIB is responding to the challenges around Business & Society. As business is expected to step up and provide the investment, innovation and capacity to scale solutions that can solve the world’s largest problems, USCIB members find themselves increasingly in the cross-hairs as anti-business sentiment continues to flourish among policymakers in forums around the world.

In response to this challenge and opportunity, USCIB has launched three new initiatives designed to show the pivotal role business plays in furtherance of the 2030 Agenda:

  • Together for Nutrition Principles – a joint project between The USCIB Foundation, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), and the Wilton Park Foundation defining a set of principles for public-private sector engagement to advance the nutrition-related SDGs.
  • All In Campaign – an advocacy campaign bringing policymakers and global businesses together in key UN cities to engage in dialogues to advance opportunities for inclusive engagement with business from all industry sectors as essential to meeting the SDG goals.
  • Business in Society: A Crisis of Trust – a USCIB Foundation initiative that aims to influence attitudes and behaviors among policymakers through data, analysis and education to arrive at a common understanding that business can be profitable and still be a trusted partner in meeting the challenges facing society.

Join us as we discuss our work to date on these initiatives as well as what’s planned for the year ahead and beyond and how you can get involved. Speakers will be announced in the coming weeks and a formal invitation will follow.

For more information, please contact Alison Hoiem, Senior Director, Member Services (ahoiem@uscib.org).

UN Environment Assembly Advances Ambitious Environmental Policy Agenda

4th UN Environment Assembly

The world’s highest-level decision-making body on environmental policy the Fourth Session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) met in Nairobi, Kenya, from March 11 – 15 under the overarching theme “Innovative Solutions for Environmental Challenges and Sustainable Consumption and Production”. A record number of 5,000 delegates from 179 countries, NGOs and business attended. Many stayed on for the 2nd round of deliberations on a proposed UN Global Pact for Environment (GPE) from March 18 -20.

USCIB members, including the American Chemistry Council, Croplife, IBM, 3M and Novozymes, and USCIB staff were involved in several events during and alongside the UNEA4 conference and subsequent GPE deliberations.

USCIB worked closely with the U.S. government delegation attending the meeting, and held a roundtable for members in Nairobi with Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Marcia Bernicat and other administration officials.

Speaking at a high-level dinner for government delegations convened by Global Business Alliance for the Environment (GBA4E), Norine Kennedy, USCIB vice president for environment, energy and strategic international engagement, stated that U.S. business regards the 17 SDGs as the blueprint of integrated objectives for environment, social, development, and economic policy and actions.

“It will take ‘out of box’ thinking by governments and business  to implement systems-thinking and systems-doing approaches on environmental protection,” said Kennedy.

The 2nd substantive deliberations on a proposed UN Global Pact for the Environment (GPE) continued member state consideration of the substance and form of a possible Pact, intended to:

  • address “gaps” in international environmental law,
  • reach consistency on existing (such as “polluter pays” and “precautionary” principles) and new (such as “planetary boundaries” and “rights of mother earth”) “soft law” environmental principles
  • improve coordination across existing multilateral agreements and environment related instruments.

Although UNEA4 reviewed options for policy cooperation and action on a wide range of environmental matters, the main political momentum focussed solidly on addressing plastic waste, especially in the form of marine debris and/or single-use plastics.  Governments proposed three separate resolutions on marine debris, and India added a fourth resolution on single-use plastics.  Numerous NGOs on hand also targeted plastic waste and called for a treaty and ban on plastics, citing environmental impact and its indirect link to climate change through petro-chemicals.  The eventual outcomes of UNEA4 stopped short of launching a legally binding treaty negotiation on these matters, but expectations that political pressure will continue to build behind these challenges remains high.

UNEA4 received and reviewed two major international environmental agenda-setting reports: the 6th Global Environmental Outlook (GEO6) and the Report of the International Resources Panel (IRP). These will likely drive international policymakers’ attention, much as the IPCC findings are significant rationale for climate policy. Other science-policy connections discussed at UNEA-4 included attention to big data and geo-observation. The 2 reports present scientific expert analysis relating to resource scarcity and health impacts of environmental degradation, and highlight priorities that will surely be considered in further international policy discussions. The IRP report considers the possibility of Science Based Targets for finite resources, applicable to business.

Government deliberations on proposed UN Global Pact for Environment concluded with a wide range of views and little evident consensus, beyond general support for the importance of strengthening implementation of international environmental law.  Government delegations continued to discuss different definitions of what constituted “gaps” and “challenges” relating to international environmental law.  Delegates considered different forms a Pact might take, including a declaration of the UN General Assembly, or additional mandated activity in UNEnvironment, or a legally binding instrument, or some combination of those and other outcomes.

The GPE deliberations resume from May 20 – 22, again in Nairobi.

The next UN Environment Assembly (UNEA5) takes place in February 2021.