Half of CEOs are investing in low carbon – poll

Business leaders are motivated to act on climate change but don’t see UN Paris deal as a major driver, PwC survey shows

(Flickr/Mariano Mantel)

(Flickr/Mariano Mantel)

By Megan Darby

More than half (54%) of CEOs are changing their strategic investments to take advantage of green growth opportunities, according to a survey by consultancy PwC.

Out of 142 respondents, drawn from PwC’s 1,200-strong pool of major business leaders, four fifths were motivated to act on climate change by concerns for future generations.

A smaller group made links between global warming and core business risks, with only 4% raising the subject at board level on a monthly basis.

Jon Williams, PwC partner and climate expert, said: “Far more need to be motivated by business as well as moral issues, and make the connection between climate change and financial performance, particularly in the context of an ambitious deal on climate change this year.”


Taken from an online poll of 142 business leaders (Source: PwC)

Taken from an online poll of 142 business leaders (Source: PwC)

Asked what they thought would drive action on climate change, CEOs were most likely to say greater public awareness (80% agreed).

Only 46% said the same of a climate change agreement in Paris, due to be finalised this December.

Jonathan Grant, climate policy specialist, PwC, said: “It is often hard to make the link between the global climate negotiations and day-to-day business issues – national regulation is often more relevant and immediate.

“CEOs are more focused on the near term and direct issues like regulation and consumer attitudes. Less than half the CEOs see the Paris agreement as a driver for action in their sector, despite its role as a catalyst for national regulation, or make connection with shareholder value.”

Read more on: Climate finance