Going Beyond the Concept of a Clean Energy Economy

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Nearly 700 senior corporate executives, investors, capital market leaders and policy makers met this April to discuss how to “Get US There!” – to a just and sustainable global economy, the theme of Ceres 2019 conference which two of our Clean Energy Economy MN team members attended.

The conference is centered on the business case for sustainability, and in 2019 there is a clear and compelling business case. We heard from large asset owners who described how they were planning to redirect their investments, from CFOs who were tasked with reducing risk in their global companies, and from company leaders who shared how consumers, B2B customers, and their employees are pressuring them to take action.

Some of the ideas that captured our interest this year were: strategies for managing the life-cycle of products and incorporating waste into supply chains; leveraging technology (AI and microgrids) to accelerate carbon reduction, pushing your trade groups so that their advocacy aligns with your business (and sustainability) goals; and creating value for employees and stakeholders (in addition to shareholders).

While some of these topics may not seem applicable to every business, the biggest takeaway was that collaborating on solutions, building leadership, and pushing for policy that will make systemic change is critical and something that every organization can be part of.

CEEM is inspired by these discussions and looks forward to figuring out how we can help businesses push the envelope, and speed up our collective transition to a clean energy economy.