From agreement to action: mobilizing suppliers toward a climate resilient world

Following the historic international deal agreed at the UN climate conference, COP21, and the news from Davos that climate change is the world’s most impactful risk, major companies such as Dell, Unilever and Walmart are establishing the extent to which impending climate regulation will impact their business. However, half their key suppliers fail to respond to requests for climate information, hindering efforts to understand and manage climate risk. So finds the largest ever study of climate data from suppliers and their corporate customers, produced by CDP and written in partnership with BSR. The COP21 Paris agreement requires global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to reduce to net zero well before the end of the century. With supply chains responsible for up to four times the GHGs of a company’s direct operations2, they house sizable regulatory risk but also present ample opportunity for businesses to lower emissions. For this reason, 75 multinationals representing over US$2 trillion in procurement spend work with CDP - providers of the global environmental disclosure platform - to seek data from 7,879 key suppliers on their carbon emissions and climate risk strategies. Information was received from 4,005 suppliers, meaning 49% failed to fulfill their customers’ requests, creating a substantial blind-spot for those preparing for a carbon constrained world.