The retail and consumer goods sector "needs to deliver" on climate pledges during what will be a "decade of impact and action", The Consumer Goods Forum managing director Wai-Chan Chan has said.
In an open letter to Forum members, which followed the publication of the sixth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessment report earlier this week, Chan said that the "fingerprints of manmade climate change" can be found around the world, with fires, storms and heatwaves more commonplace, and temperatures on the rise.
Extreme Weather Events
"With the backdrop of extreme weather events which we are seeing already flaring up around the world in these final months before COP – as witnessed in Greece, Germany and the US, to name but a few – the publishing of this report could not be timelier," Chan wrote. "The bottom line is clear: we are grossly unprepared for a changing climate.
"As members of The Consumer Goods Forum, I trust you know all this already, but now is the time to act."
As well as participating in the Forum's Coalitions of Action, which seek to address issues such as food waste and deforestation, the group is calling on its members, and the wider retail and consumer goods community, to commit to necessary actions through initiatives like Race to Zero, a UN-backed global campaign to halve global emissions by 2030.
The group has set up a Taskforce to assist members interested in joining the Race to Zero initiative, working alongside Accenture and the broader climate action network.
"However, time is short and this needs to be a decade of impact and action," said Chan. "If we move now, and quickly – we can still create a healthier, fairer, more resilient and ultimately more liveable zero-carbon world."
The Consumer Goods Forum's Sustainable Retail Summit takes place on 13 and 14 October. More information can be found here.