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Creating Climate Wealth - North America 2012 Summary & Action Plan

Executive Summary

On 27 and 28 March 2012, the Carbon War Room convened executives, investors, academics, entrepreneurs and select public sector representatives in Washington, DC for the third North American Creating Climate Wealth (CCW) summit. Attendees focused their expertise within one of six ‘working tracks’, composed of roundtable discussions facilitated by Carbon War Room staff. The topics considered were: Aviation & Renewable Fuels; The Carbon Negative Economy; Energy Access; Energy Efficiency: Built Environment; Sustainable Agriculture: Livestock; and Trucking.

For all of these sectors, Carbon War Room research finds that mature technologies exist which have the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) while providing strong returns on investment. However, major market barriers are preventing these technologies from achieving widespread adoption, jeopardizing the world’s chance of meeting critical climate stabilisation targets and constraining wealth creation. Within their working tracks, attendees identified and analysed the most pressing barriers to green market growth, and then developed a set of solutions for overcoming those barriers and accelerating the deployment of clean technology.

At the end of their two-day discussions, each of the six working track groups presented its most promising strategy to a plenary session chaired by a panel of major investors and change-makers. This publicly available report summarizes the working tracks’ discussions and strategies in the hope that they may serve as operational pathways for all stakeholders invested in achieving substantial emissions reductions in these sectors. Though the working tracks considered complex issues, the solutions presented here are concrete and actionable. They address specific barriers, provide near-term benchmarks for success, and identify relevant actors along with the roles they can play. The CCW summit is a unique, outcome-oriented workshop, with a sector-based approach to solving problems. It opens doors, building knowledge, confidence and information sharing. Much of its enduring value comes from the relationships and partnerships developed at the summit – relationships which then facilitate the successful implementation of the summit’s catalytic solution strategies.

Furthermore, the summit’s findings form part of the basis of the work of the Carbon War Room and our partners over the following year in a given sector. Two of the working tracks summarized here – Aviation & Renewable Fuels and Energy Efficiency: Built Environment – are active Carbon War Room operations already, pursuing strategies developed at previous summits. At this meeting we sought to refine and build upon them while bringing more stakeholders into the discussion. The other four tracks – The Carbon Negative Economy, Energy Access, Sustainable Agriculture: Livestock and Trucking – are currently in the research and scoping phase, as the Carbon War Room gathers more information about barriers and opportunities in these sectors.

In addition to using the Creating Climate Wealth summit to guide our own operations, the Carbon War Room charges all attendees to ask themselves certain questions: How do I participate in this solution? What can I do to move this forward? These solutions require the concerted co-operation of multiple stakeholders. But with work comes reward, as each of the emission reduction strategies presented here are structured to provide profitable returns on investment and catalyse economic growth in their sectors.

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Carbon War Room in association with Elsevier Biofuel TechSelect Go to the Carbon War Room website