Saving the planet is also good for business

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Written by: Linda B. Bolido

Is the world losing the war against climate change and its consequent adverse effects?

The battle may be difficult, but many environmental warriors are not giving up and have become more determined than ever to fight until the war is won.

Switching to renewable energy for our source of electricity is one of the main strategies to achieve climate neutrality. Pictured is EDC geothermal power plant at Mt. Apo or Mindanao geothermal producing field located at Brgy. Ilomavis, Kidapawan City, North Cotabato near the foot of Mount Apo with an installed capacity of 106.83 MW

Among the fiercest and most determined environmental activists is Energy Development Corp. (EDC), the renewable energy leader owned by First Gen, which launched the Net Zero Carbon Alliance (NZCA), the Philippines’ first private sector-led movement towards carbon neutrality, or maintaining a healthy balance between emission and carbon absorption.

Atti. Allan V. Barcena, Executive Director of NZCA and Assistant Vice President of EDC and Head of Corporate Relations and Communications, explains the initiative: “Corporations are known to be huge contributors to the warming of our planet. It is high time for us to reverse the impact of our operations from negative to positive to be part of the solution to climate change for the good of the planet and future generations.

NZCA

Atti. Allan V. Barcena, NZCA Executive Director and EDC Assistant Vice President and Head of Corporate Relations and Communications, plants a tree at one of EDC’s nurseries at its Bacon-Manito geothermal facility in the Bicol region. Planting and growing trees is one of the Net Zero Carbon Alliance’s vital strategies for carbon offsetting, based on EDC’s experience in its BINHI green legacy program. Thanks to BINHI, EDC effectively sequesters carbon, making it a carbon negative company.

Society recognizes, as primate expert Jane Goodall recently warned, that the world may be approaching a tipping point in the fight against climate change. “We are working in a very narrow window, so it is time for all of us to work together and act now.”

A net zero carbon target will also be good for business, Barcena said. “Doors of opportunity will open for companies as many financial institutions and service providers have already committed to funding or working only with companies with (carbon neutral) programs and those not involved in the production of harmful fossil fuels like coal.”

The goal of carbon neutrality is to eliminate or reduce emissions of carbon dioxide, a major contributor to the greenhouse effect which traps heat above the atmosphere, causing global warming or rising temperatures on earth. Carbon offsetting is presented as a last option for what can no longer be removed or reduced.

The NZCA was launched on September 20, 2021 to encourage Filipino businesses and other private sector actors to commit to carbon neutrality by 2050 or earlier. Through this alliance, EDC is able to pursue its mission of charting a course for a decarbonized and regenerative future. . “NZCA is a catalyst that can help our partners green their own supply chain as they begin to implement their own decarbonization strategies. By getting Philippine entities to work towards their own carbon neutrality in their operations, we all become part of our country’s solution to climate change,” Barcena points out.

The environmental alliance started with six partners in 2021: Arthaland, Drink Communications, First Balfour, Knowles, Silliman University and Unilever.

NZCA

Companies and organizations must come together and act as quickly as possible to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their own operations and supply chains.

In its first year, a learning period for the alliance, the partners worked together to share lessons learned and successes in their respective decarbonization journeys.

As it enters its second year, NZCA has six additional partners (Converge ICT Solutions, Ecolab, INAEC, Linden Suites, Menarco Development Corp. and SGV), with more collaborators expected to sign up by the end of the year. ‘year.

Barcena highlights that the partners are “industry leaders who have made a bold commitment to net zero carbon by 2050 or earlier. These are companies with varying levels of preparedness that have all come together to achieve the same goal of not only saving their businesses from the damaging effects of climate change, but also saving our planet while we still can.

According to EDC, its own experience has proven that it is possible for a company to have a more positive impact. “We take in more carbon dioxide than all of our operations release.”

In fact, the NZCA framework is based on EDC’s own experience, “which we believe applies to any other company in any industry.”

Through the NZCA, partners will be guided through the first step towards carbon neutrality.

Before the environmental crisis reaches a point of no return as Goodall fears, EDC, through the NZCA, wants to encourage companies and organizations in the Philippines to join the movement and be part of the solution. to achieve a carbon neutral country.

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