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Should the private sector lead on climate change?

Wednesday 16th March 2016, 6:15pm

A two- pulpit debate at St Mary-le-Bow Church


Affirmative: Jonathan Shopley – Managing Director, Natural Capital Partners

Negative: Baroness Worthington – Executive Director, Environmental Defense Fund Europe

Chaired by Helen Wildsmith – Stewardship Director (Climate Change), CCLA

Closing Thoughts from Brian Cuthbertson – Head of Environment and Sustainability, Diocese of London


With global, economy-wide and immediate action needed to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change, what are the most effective drivers of widespread and measureable change? A strong push for transparency on the measurement and delivery of Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) was negotiated at COP21. Now we need to consider the critical issue of how and where the most effective action can occur.


Given the ability for business to drive innovation and allocate financial resources, can the private sector step up to the opportunity and take a leadership role? Alternatively, does the complicated nature of vested interests, shareholder returns, competitive strategy, and the need for popular support mean that assertive government policy making and activist pressure is required for the degree of behavioural change needed? Should the private sector lead the way on climate change, or does government need to demand a direction of travel?


Co-Hosted by St Paul's Institute