Jesper Brodin, CEO of Ingka Group and Karen Pflug, CSO of Ingka Group, share their views on Ingka Group’s recent participation at COP28*, United Nations Climate Change Conference and the importance of keeping 1.5°C alive and deliver to the Paris Agreement.
“Businesses such as ours have a crucial role to play by raising our voice and engaging with policy makers, other business leaders and NGOs to advocate for an urgent transformation of the global energy system”
– Jesper Brodin, CEO of Ingka Group and Karen Pflug, CSO of Ingka Group
We see COP28 is an historic moment; for the first time, the need to “transition away from fossil fuels in a just and equitable way” was included in the final agreement. Although we believe that there is a strong need to go much further, it is still important to acknowledge this progress and the hard work done by negotiators from around the world.
Never before have we seen such engagement and dedication from businesses, governments and society to keep 1.5°C alive. COP28 brought together more than 100,000 people over the course of the event; much more than any previous COP. It was noticeable from our meetings and engagements how many more businesses are stepping up and speaking out. Now, all of us must channel this positive momentum into real action. The next six years are critical in defining the future of the planet and humanity for generations to come.
Eight years after the Paris Agreement was signed, the world is currently on a path of 2.5-2.9°C average warming by the end of the century, according to the latest UN data. The Global Stocktake at COP28, assessing where each country is in terms of implementing the Paris Agreement, showed that none of the current National Determined Contributions (NDCs) are in line with the Paris Agreement.
Together we must take responsibility to lead the way towards a transition to a net-zero society. Leveraging the positive momentum from COP28, it’s now up to all of us to decide what happens next. Whether it’s activists, NGOs, government officials or business leaders, we all have a role to play and need radical collaboration to tackle the climate crisis. Our latest research with Globescan clearly shows that climate change matters to the many people, with two thirds of people wanting governments and businesses to take significant action.**
Businesses such as ours have a crucial role to play by raising our voice and engaging with policy makers, other business leaders and NGOs to advocate for an urgent transformation of the global energy system. The dominant focus throughout COP28 was the urgent need to find an agreement to phase out fossil fuel use and leading up to the summit Ingka Group fully advocated for urgent action. During the summit, along with over 2000 signatories from across business, finance, philanthropy, politics, academia and civil society we also signed an open letter calling on all Parties to deliver a 1.5C aligned outcome in response to the Global Stocktake.
Our key reflections on the outcomes of COP28:
- While the final COP28 agreement did not deliver the most ambitious scenario, we are optimistic to see the first global agreement to transition away from fossil fuels by 2050, in line with science. This comes only two years after the future of fossil fuels was for the first time openly discussed at COP26 in Glasgow in 2021. Let’s take action and make this the beginning of the end of fossil fuels and a critical turning point for society.
- We strongly support the global target to triple renewable energy and double energy efficiency. We are committed to lead the change in our own business and beyond and recently announced that we will commit to invest an additional 1 BEUR into renewable energy, totaling 7.5 BEUR by 2030. This makes us a medium-sized renewable energy company and proves it’s possible to make a fast and profitable transition.
- We also support the first steps taken to operationalise the Loss and Damage Fund although more investments and a clear and just way forward for financing the transition for developing and most vulnerable countries is needed. We know that climate change is impacting the most vulnerable, and those that have contributed the least. We must ensure that this is a just transition and that no one is left behind.
For this to be seen as a successful COP28, the real work starts now. Governments and businesses need to deliver clear actions to phase out fossil fuels, accelerate renewables, close the financing gap and support a just transition for people and the planet. At COP30 we must see more ambitious NDCs. COP is an important decision-making forum, yet the work in-between is where the transformation happens.
This will not be easy. It will require a lot of continued hard work, investments, collaboration and accelerated action from all of us. But let’s choose to look at the path ahead with optimism, embracing the opportunity to create a thriving society and economy, powered by clean and efficient energy. And let’s not forget, the climate crisis is first and foremost a people crisis; affecting the most vulnerable, in disproportionate ways. It is critical that we bring everyone along on the journey and ensure no-one is left behind.
For more information and a summary of COP28 from the business sector please read here from World Economic Forum (WEF), where Jesper Brodin is currently part of the Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders – COP28: What did it accomplish and what’s next? | World Economic Forum (weforum.org)
*COP is the official convening of the 197 governments/parties who ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992 to jointly address climate change. But it is much broader than the 197 parties as it includes many non-state actors that play their part in collectively tackling the climate crisis – like us from the private sector.
**To read more about Ingka Group’s new People & Planet Consumers insights study please visit Ingka.com or read the infographic summary here – People & Planet Consumer Insights & Trends 2023 | Ingka Group and PowerPoint Presentation (ingka.com)
About Ingka Group:
With IKEA retail operations on 31 markets, Ingka Group is the largest IKEA retailer and represents about 90% of IKEA retail sales. It is a strategic partner to develop and innovate the IKEA business and help define common IKEA strategies. Ingka Group owns and operates IKEA sales channels under franchise agreements with Inter IKEA Systems B.V. It has three business areas: IKEA Retail, Ingka Investments and Ingka Centres. Read more on www.Ingka.com.