(Singapore, 7 April 2008) – Singapore will play host for the second-year to the most important global event on business and the environment, the annual B4E – Business for the Environment Global Summit, jointly hosted by the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Global Compact. The event will take place at the Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre from 22 to 23 April 2008.
While last year’s event focused on the business case for sustainable practices and getting companies to embrace their corporate environment responsibilities, the agenda for 2008 will see speakers and delegates addressing topics of how corporate citizens can advance business-driven, pro-environment strategies that will also have a positive impact on their bottom line.
“Climate change will affect business and society in fundamental and transformative ways. It represents risks but also opportunities to move the global economy to a Green Economy, “ said Mr. Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UNEP. “B4E provides an opportunity for corporations; national leaders and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Asia and across the world to be at the forefront of these transformations and to lead by example, showcasing in concrete ways how they are accelerating resource and energy efficiency—how they are building tomorrow’s economy today".
A highlight of the B4E Global Summit 2008 is a high-level roundtable discussion with this year’s UNEP Champions of the Earth laureates on the topic of advancing the climate agenda through policy, mitigation and adaptation. The laureates participating in this discussion are HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco; Balgis Osman-Elasha, a senior researcher at Sudan’s Higher Council for Environment & Natural Resources; Atiq Rahman, the Executive Director of the Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies; Liz Thompson, the former Energy and Environment Minister of Barbados; and Abdul-Qader Ba-Jammal, the Secretary General of the Yemen People’s General Congress.
The B4E Global Summit 2008 will be opened by Mr. Mah Bow Tan, Minister for National Development, Singapore, and is expected to attract almost 1,000 participants. Other distinguished keynote speakers, moderators and panellists who will be at the event include Adrian Hodges, Managing Director of the International Business Leaders Forum; Göran Persson, Sweden’s former Prime Minister; Li Yue, Vice President of China Mobile; Aron Cramer, CEO of Business for Social Responsibility, and Ashok Khosla, Chairman of the Development Alternatives Group.
“If we are to stand a chance in tackling the momentous climate challenge before us, we depend on the private sector’s resources, its capacity for innovation and its ability to turn challenges into opportunities,” said Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact. “ I am confident that this year’s event will embolden and inspire business leaders to bring their efforts to true scale. We also look forward to more companies demonstrating climate leadership by endorsing ‘Caring for Climate’, our global engagement platform and call to action.”
Some of the topics tabled for discussion at the two-day event include:
- Leadership and innovation in resource efficiency;
- Environmental partnerships: Leverage corporate and NGO capabilities; and
- Renewable energies in emerging markets: issues, challenges and opportunities.
Industry-specific tracks will also highlight the concrete value that businesses can realise by financing and investing in climate-friendly production, policy tools and market instruments that can be used in sustainable building and construction, and how climate change can be tackled through information communication and technology.
The event is organised by Global Initiatives and supported by Business for Social Responsibility; strategic partner Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL); corporate partners The Dow Chemical Company, OSRAM and Siemens; and Singapore government partners Ministry of Environment & Water Resources and the Singapore Tourism Board. The event’s international public relations partner is Edelman, and its global media partners are CNN and TIME.
More information on the B4E Global Summit agenda, speakers, topics and registration is available at www.B4Esummit.com.
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