Business, Political Leaders Open Climate Week NYC, Call for Urgent Action on Climate Change

Jim Kim, Todd Stern, Tony Blair, Richard Branson, farmers, conservatives, military and corporate chiefs say it's time to move on from endless science debate

Sep 23, 2013, 17:20 ET from The Climate Group

NEW YORK, September 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

With the IPCC report expected to show virtually unanimous consensus on man-made climate change, world leaders - including World Bank President Kim, US Special Envoy for Climate Change Stern, and former UK Prime Minister Blair - opened Climate Week NYC, calling for ending the endless science debate and focusing instead on low carbon growth. They were joined by corporate leaders from  Swiss Re, HP, Phillips, IKEA,  SolarCity, Richard Branson, Tom Steyer, David Miliband, faith leader Dorothy Boorse, former Republican Congressman Bob Inglis, Brigadier General Cheney (Ret.), and Pam Johnson, from the National Corn Growers Association.

CWNYC organizers The Climate Group said America would miss out on $3 trillion of GDP gains if it failed to invest in cleantech.

"Decades of progress are now in danger of being rolled back, because of climate change," said Jim Kim. "This is a 'make-or-break' decade for action on global warming."

Todd Stern said: "The President is taking strong action on the strength of both existing congressional authority and executive authority. A new agreement in Paris in 2015 will only work if it leaves ideology at the door."

 "It is time that we get over the science debate and start taking serious, coordinated action to tackle the effects of climate change," said Tony Blair, who chairs The Climate Group's International Leadership Council.

The Climate Group CEO, Mark Kenber announced that the organization will bring together 100 businesses committing to 100% renewable energy. He commented: "Governments and businesses are increasingly embracing a clean industrial revolution. Our corporate supporters have a combined revenue of over $1 trillion; half a billion people live in our regional government members." He called for a new bi-partisan consensus to boost low carbon growth.

HP announced a commitment to a 20% decrease in emissions across their supply chain. HP CEO Meg Whitman commented: "HP is taking some bold steps to respond to this challenge, not only by reducing our own footprint, but to fundamentally change the carbon footprint of IT."

"We need to cultivate leadership that is ready and willing to drive innovation and lead progress towards the Clean Revolution, "said Sir Richard Branson.

Swiss Re Americas Chairman Philip Ryan commented: "By addressing the crisis of climate change - through prevention, preparedness and financial protection - we can make our communities more resilient."  

"We are committed to telling the climate story and increase climate change awareness", said David Kenny, The Weather Company Chairman & CEO. The Weather Company is the CWNYC 2013 Media Partner.

"This debate is an opportunity for conservatives to step forward with a bold alternative," said Bob Inglis.

"The threat of climate change is a massive opportunity to innovate and create a clean energy, low-carbon economy The issue isn't human inventiveness - it's political intransigence," said Tom Steyer.

SOURCE The Climate Group