Business Innovation and access to funding play a critical role in the process of building resilient businesses, enterprises, and communities. Sustainable investment practices offer not only the benefits of reducing economic, environmental, and social risk, but also the potential for investors to achieve superior risk-adjusted financial returns.

Executive Order (EO) Climate Preparedness and Resiliency, November 2013

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Build Business Back Better (BBBB)

The BBBB leads the creation of more resilient businesses, cities, and towns, by providing FREE access to workforce training, critical contacts and resources for businesses. 

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GEO-5 for Business (left) provides a clear picture of trends and impacts that should compel business leaders to take action. It synthesizes a large amount of research (with 389 citations in the 41-page report) and provides a comprehensive view of what individual and collective environmental trends mean to 10 specific business sectors.

The sectors assessed are: Building/Construction, Chemicals, Electric Power, Extractives, Finance, Food/Beverage, Healthcare, Information/Communication Technology, Tourism and Transportation. The report identifies impacts across the value chain, from raw material procurement to product end-of-life, and assesses reputation and public policy implications as well.

Climate Risk Plan

The Climate Risk plan addresses both climate risk adaptation and greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction. Resilience measures can go beyond preparing for and recovering from disasters, but can bolster the economy and enhance quality of life. By building efficiency measures and transportation and communication choices can both enhance economic and community resilience and reduce GHGs.  According to the National Academy of Sciences, resilience is the ability to prepare and plan for, absorb, recover from, or more successfully adapt to actual or potential adverse events. Vision of resilience is that when the next superstorm or heat wave comes, we will still be able to turn on the lights, get to work and do our jobs, and enjoy life. Resilience includes reducing vulnerability and exposure to hazards. Different communities talk about this in different ways… for instance, some might call it security, or hazard mitigation, or sustainability. In fact there’s a rich and growing literature on different aspects of and approaches to resilience. 

Climate adaptation, one approach to resilience, consists of five key steps:

1. Assess climate impacts. For example, use climate models to asses different future scenarios.

2. Identify risks and vulnerabilities. Based on the local context, recent impacts, critical infrastructure location and condition.

3. Assess potential solutions. Review best practices, analyze effectiveness, and assess costs and benefits.

4. Develop and Implement Action Plan. Define thresholds, prioritize short- and long-term actions, measure progress and revise plans accordingly.

5. Garner support for implementation. Address top concerns of public and decision makers, visualize solutions, and quantify risks and benefits.

Call to Action

Businesses are on the front lines of climate risk; record breaking extreme weather, unreliable and costly energy, and economic uncertainty. To better mitigate and manage risk for business, the CEC in partnership with SMART Community Exchange, help business build climate resilience through technology. Actionable knowledge and access to critical information, experts, expertise and resources will help businesses and enterprises better mitigate, adapt, and manage climate risk and bounce back from disruptions in a sustainable way after disaster strikes. As business leaders:

  • We urge to support workforce training and to take meaningful steps to build climate resilience for business and communities worldwide. 

  • We commit to building business resilience through collaborative learning, such as the workforce training program described below.

  • We commit to sharing our solutions, best practices and success stories with other leaders and learners through workforce training. 

Key Focus

Climate Preparedness

  • Evaluating risk to extreme weather, from heat waves to droughts and floods to air pollution.

  • Adopting and implementing preparedness policies that protect business, people, and natural resources.

  • Reducing the carbon footprint.

Energy Security

  • Achieving greater energy independence, protect businesses and communities from price spikes and ensure more reliable power during disruptions.

  • Implementing energy efficiency program that help businesses and employees save money and energy, lower carbon emissions, and reduce demand on the grid during severe weather events.

Infrastructure Renewal

  • Investing in upgrades to serve the changing needs of businesses and communities.

  • Creating new models to finance climate resilience for business and manage risk for business assets. 

  • Harnessing business innovation to optimize performance and reduce cost through more efficient operation.

Economic Growth

  • Attracting and retaining investment by building more resilient businesses and safeguarding communities from extreme weather and ensuring access to funding, energy, and other critical resources. 

  • Supporting private sector in creating new business opportunities, diversifying local economies, and building businesses that are more resilient to climate-related risk and economic downturn, through business innovation and job creation in sectors such as technology, energy, manufacturing and agriculture.