EconomyAfter the Citizen's Climate Convention, companies are launching their...

After the Citizen’s Climate Convention, companies are launching their Great Challenge

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After the European Climate Chance summit on Monday and Tuesday, the Cité des Congrès in Nantes is hosting another event this Wednesday evening intended to “accelerate responses to global warming”. This time, it is the French economic world that is invited to mobilize via the launch of the Great Business Challenge for the Planet. Objective: to bring out 100 proposals for concrete actions by November.

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“I had just returned from a conference with business leaders from Vendée and I saw their difficulty in understanding the issues related to the climate and biodiversity, justifies Virginie Raisson-Victor, president of the Giec des Pays-de-la-Loire, at the origin of the Great Challenge. It’s not that they were in denial, but rather that they didn’t really know how to act, or even what their responsibility was in the face of this seemingly immense task. I talked about it around me and we thought that we could help companies find solutions by launching the equivalent of a Citizens’ Convention for the economic world. »

A draw for ambassadors

Like the Citizen’s Climate Convention launched in 2020, the method will involve a draw: 150 companies representative of the diversity of the economic fabric (number of employees, sectors of activity, geographical location, statutes, etc.) will be chosen at random and then, if they agree to play the game, will have the task of formulating a hundred “realistic, ambitious and verifiable proposals”. These proposals will target all the areas of intervention of a company: production tools, human resources, financing, governance, regulations, etc.

Spreading of phytosanitary products in agricultural areas (illustration) – DENIS CHARLET / AFP
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The 150 ambassadors will be able to interview experts and meet in “work sessions” in Montpellier, Nantes and Lille. They will also be able to rely on the resources made available by a “large consultation” of economic players and organized civil society upstream. The process will take eight months in total.

“Nothing will happen without companies”

“The impact of companies in the destruction of the environment is undeniable, insists Jérôme Cohen, founder of the Engage research center and co-organizer of the Grand Défi. And in these companies there are citizen managers and employees who also want to be actors. So nothing will happen without them. To be up to the challenge of climate change, you have to get them on board” “Between the need for growth and the need to reduce their ecological footprint, companies are often faced with a contradictory logic. It is essential that they themselves find a way out of this contradiction,” adds Virginie Raisson-Victor.

The draw has just started and, according to the organizers, the first feedback is very positive. “We already have around forty companies ready to commit,” rejoices Jérôme Cohen. We feel that this question of ecological transition is less fearful than a few years ago. Awareness has passed. »

In September, a somewhat similar approach, called the Business Convention for the Climate, was also launched at the French level. Since then, 150 bosses of small and large companies have been working on the formulation of proposals.

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Source: 20minutes

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