COP28: Kearney & the WCF partner for business sustainability

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Through partnerships we can make an impact on the energy transition towards a more sustainable world, says Richard Forrest, Kearney Head of Sustainability

Leading global management consulting firm Kearney has been a trusted advisor to C-suites, government bodies, and non-profit organisations for nearly a century. 


To further support the private and public sector transition to more regenerative business models, the firm is partnering with the World Climate Foundation (WCF), the leading global platform dedicated to addressing climate change.


The World Climate Foundation is the most influential global platform dedicated to accelerating action and creating impact to address climate change, restore biodiversity and ensure health resilience through the power of convening, collaboration, and change.


It facilitates large-scale collaboration between governments, businesses, financial institutions, and international organisations, enabling the transition to a net-zero, nature-positive and healthy future. 


“In the current climate crisis, organisations have a moral obligation to consider their position in wider society and the natural world,” believes Alex Liu, Managing Partner and Chairman at Kearney


Liu joined Kearney in 1996, having gained his MBA from Harvard and a bachelors in economics from Yale University. He has served as both speaker and co-chair at World Economic Forum (WEF) events, and is a trusted advisor to boards and CEOs around the world.


“Becoming a regenerative business requires transitioning beyond today’s focus on resilience to a new world where we are all part of a comprehensive system that both performs and cares for people and places. As Harvard professor Greg Norris commented, it is no longer about doing ‘less harm’ and reducing our footprint but seeking to increase our socio ecological handprint. 


“Our partnership with the WCF is an important step in this transition for Kearney, and we hope to be able to use our knowledge to inspire and support others on the same regenerative journey.” 


Supporting businesses during the energy transition

The partnership, which was launched at COP28, will direct Kearney’s international network of more than 100 sustainability experts and the efforts of two in-house think tanks—the Energy Transition Institute and the Global Business Policy Council—to support the WCF with real action on the climate crisis. 


Enabling and empowering the shift to regenerative business models will be a key focus in a step change from focusing on standalone “resilience” to understanding businesses as interconnected parts of the society in which they operate.  


“As we approach three decades since the original signing of the Paris Agreement, COP28 falls in a year where we need more urgent, more significant action than ever to address the climate crisis. We’re pleased to be partnering with Kearney to share knowledge and drive this message across the business world,” says Jens Nielsen, CEO and Founder of the WCF.


Nielsen is the global leader in climate and sustainability who founded the WCF in 2006, and has been CEO since. He is a board member for Climate Planet, Art 2030 and the GreenLab Innovation Foundation.  


“We must act now to change how we do business, to encourage models that give back as much as they take. The climate crisis is not a business opportunity; it’s a survival opportunity.”  


“We’re delighted to be partnering with the WCF on this important issue,” comments Richard Forrest, Partner and Global Head of Sustainability at Kearney. 


Forrest uses over 25 years’ experience across the energy and chemicals sectors globally to help clients navigate what he believes to be not only the biggest challenge of our time, but also the biggest opportunity.


A longstanding advocate of energy transition, Forrest led Kearney’s global energy practice for six years, with a focus on helping clients address the energy transition. During this time, he established the Energy Transition Institute in the firm and created a technology start-up (EV8) to accelerate adoption of EVs.


“Through partnerships and collaborative initiatives with knowledgeable and innovative organisations, we can make a real impact on the transition to a more sustainable world. We’ll be working with the WCF through COP28, at the World Economic Forum meeting in January, and during New York and London Climate Week in 2024. Watch this space.” 



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