ACT @ COP23: The untapped opportunity for private sector in climate change adaptation
Ms Vidya Soundarajan, from Action on Climate Today (ACT) initiative, highlighted the importance of articulating the business case for adaptation for encouraging private sector investments at the International Union for Conservation of Nature event at COP 23 in Bonn on Thursday. Some of the key points discussed by ACT in the panel discussions are as follows:
Private sector actors are crucial for bridging the adaptation finance gap, and therefore we need to speak their language and offer a business case aligned with their business interests. Similarly, risks of climate impacts to private sector businesses can build a strong rationale for getting them interested in investing further. ACT’s toolkit on private sector engagement helps build awareness among businesses about various approaches that can be undertaken for Climate Change Adaptation based on successfully implemented models that are applicable in
the Indian context.
ACT’s experience shows that private sector can be engaged not only for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) but for business opportunities. ACT’s work in Maharashtra, India pitched adaptation as a business case to private sector and identified following areas for private sector engagement:
- Climate risk assessment of value chain: this can improve the resilience of businesses to ensure their continuity;
- Product diversification: there are new market opportunities through technology-based solutions for water management and climate smart agriculture;
- Community-driven business models: these include ecotourism and community-based afforestation programmes; and,
- Climate finance: the private sector will play an important role in climate risk insurance and other climate finance products.