WBCSD joins Powering Past Coal Alliance as corporate partner

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30 June, 2021




Geneva, Switzerland, 30 June 2021 – To coincide with London Climate Action Week, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) has announced a partnership with the Powering Past Coal Alliance (PPCA). PPCA and WBCSD will work together to ensure that COP26, the UN Climate Conference in Glasgow in November, is the pivotal moment to ‘Make Coal History’.

Claire O’Neill, Managing Director of Climate & Energy at WBCSD, co-created the PPCA as the UK Minister for Energy & Clean Growth along with Catherine McKenna, then the Canadian Minister of Environment & Climate Change and it was launched at COP23 in Bonn in 2017.  The PPCA is a coalition of national and sub-national governments, businesses and organizations working to advance the transition from unabated coal power generation to clean energy. Since its launch four years ago, the PPCA now now counts 111 members, including 34 national governments, 33 subnational governments and 44 businesses. It has developed into the leading platform working to rapidly advance the transition from unabated coal – the dirtiest, most polluting way of generating electricity – to clean energy, such as hydro, nuclear, wind, solar and bio-fuels.

As part of this partnership, WBCSD will leverage its extensive Global Network of more than 60 partner organizations, encompassing more than 5,000 members, to amplify solutions through domestic sustainable business network but also to raise the number of PPCA signatories.  With members drawn from the world’s largest multinational companies, WBCSD will work with these organizations to develop coal free supply chain plans, in addition to their commitments to renewable deployments.

“The Alliance has been very successful, with one third of the OECD’s total capacity now scheduled to close by 2030, and Germany committed to coal phase out by 2038 or sooner. Elsewhere, the recent pledges of the South Korean government in accelerating away from coal generation and finance demonstrates what can be done if all levers are full engaged” said Claire O’Neill.

“The work of the PPCA has never been more vital and we’re delighted for WBCSD to be partnering with them.  Phasing out coal-fired electricity is one of the most important steps we can take to tackle the climate crisis and it needs to happen now. Business has an enormous role to play in driving action along global supply chains and providing upward pressure to accelerate their phase-out plans.”

With 200 members representing leading sustainable companies from all sectors and major economies, and a combined revenue of USD $8.5 trillion and 19 million employees, WBCSD is calling on business to join the PPCA and make 2021 the year we came together at COP26 to make coal history.

This partnership builds on the launch of Vision 2050: Time to Transform, a comprehensive framework for business action,  which sets a shared vision of a world in which more than 9 billion people are able to live well, within planetary boundaries, by 2050. Vision 2050 is in line with the urgency of the three biggest challenges we collectively face: the climate emergency; nature in crisis; and mounting inequality.

This follows the announcement in October 2020, that WBCSD, together with members, raised the bar of business commitment to sustainability through a set of new criteria put forward as part of WBCSD’s membership conditions, including science-aligned net zero goal.

Read Claire’s op-ed in The Times here