Climate change adaptation is a social process, and there are social dimensions of climate change that need to be addressed by multilateral collaboration, driven by business and backed up with strong legislation.
Courtney Holm, Vice President, Sustainable Futures at Capgemini Invent, discusses how actions taken by companies against climate change are intrinsically linked with human experience at Sustainability Live Virtual - New York 2023.
Sustainability LIVE: Uniting global leaders
Sustainability Magazine, Feedspot’s number-one ESG magazine, hosts a number of in-person and virtual events throughout the year, welcoming the world’s most influential sustainability leaders to the stage to discuss some of today’s most pressing topics.
On 19th April 2023, the first-ever Sustainability LIVE New York was held, where thousands of delegates tuned in virtually from across the globe.
Sustainability past, present and future
Capgemini Invent is the digital innovation, consulting and transformation brand of the Capgemini Group, a global business line that combines market leading expertise in strategy, technology, data science and creative design, to help CxOs envision and build what’s next for their businesses.
Courtney Holm has been pivotal to development of Capgemini’s first-ever sustainability offering, having previously worked as Global Head of Sustainable Technology at Unilever, and provided strategic advice and guidance on sustainability and climate adaptation as a respected advisor, trustee and board member of various organisations.
Sustainability strategies to benefit globally
“It is critical that climate change adaptation strategies are not solely about Western world compliance or business continuity as we see now, but should also put people and the planet at the centre of the solution,” says Holm.
“We need to start thinking more about a modern community that's based on inclusion, equality, wellbeing and justice — for all. So clearly there is a role for governments, the private sector and also the third sector, with partnerships becoming critical to regenerate our social systems.”
Holm discusses the importance of multilateral collaboration across geopolitical boundaries, citing that between 3.3 billion to 3.6 billion people are highly vulnerable to climate change, especially in developing areas, and this is going to increase global poverty.
“The estimates are showing that by 2030, 700 million people will be at risk of displacement by drought alone.”
Technological advances to global equality
She praises the potential within technology: “Technology has practical applications like advanced weather modelling to inform governments, businesses and citizens of imminent events and also longer term forecasts to inform built environment and infrastructure investment decisions. It can save lives and also livelihoods, because it's not just whether or not there's an infrastructure or a building or a city that is impacted. What's also impacted are the livelihoods of those people.”
“Adaptation strategies should not just be about meeting and reporting requirements or providing risk based business continuity, but as an opportunity to regenerate our social systems and develop more modern business communities based on inclusion, equality, wellbeing and justice for all citizens.”
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