Patagonia CEO: Business leaders must do better to protect our planet

SSociety’s reliance on fossil fuels has caused a climate crisis that is harming our health, especially in frontline communities, causing an extinction crisis and creating frequent and deadly extreme weather events. The war in Ukraine is the latest and most horrific reminder of our overreliance on oil and gas, and it underscores the urgent need for renewable energy independence.

Many companies have promised to alleviate the climate crisis, but few are doing anything significant enough to address the severity of the threat. This applies to their carbon footprint, supply chains, financial partners, and corporate advocacy through groups such as the American Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable. We need to hold corporations and our elected leaders accountable and we need to work together.

Read more: Don’t sell your fossil fuel stock if you want to make a difference to climate change in 2022

Systemic change is needed to protect our planet and support thriving communities. Addressing the root causes of the climate crisis is essential for business leaders to achieve this change and we are committed to doing this in several ways. The first is to commit to eliminating sources of virgin petroleum from our products by 2030 and investing in substantial removals and reductions of supply chain emissions, in line with science-based targets. It is also important for companies to assess their financial partners and engage with those who contribute the most to the global energy transition.

Not all solutions will come from the corporate world. Companies should work with grassroots groups to support communities most affected by the climate crisis. We can help protect nature by supporting Indigenous and community-led efforts to restore land and water to sequester carbon and ensure the resilience of people and biodiversity.

Finally, we need to end corporate doublespeak: Your company’s political contributions and business affiliations must not sabotage ongoing legislative work to address the climate crisis.

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