H&M, Ikea, Walmart, and Kingfisher launch climate change initiative

Four of the world’s biggest retailers have launched a new climate change initiative.

H&M Group, Ikea-owner Ingka Group, Kingfisher, and Walmart have established the Race to Zero Breakthroughs: Retail Campaign in partnership with the COP26 High level Climate Action Champions and supported by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).

The retailers have pledged to accelerate a movement in the retail industry to drive climate action and encourage other retailers to set out their plans to achieve 1.5 degree aligned carbon reduction targets.

According to the campaign, only 5 per cent of retail businesses – by total global industry revenues – have committed to taking action to limit global warming in accordance with the Paris Agreement goals.

“This campaign is a call to retailers everywhere to take ambitious climate action as they increasingly recognise the risks posed by climate change across their supply chains and operations,” said Peter Bakker, president and chief executive of the WBCSD, the organisation leading the campaign. “We need more retailers to join the UNFCCC’s Race to Zero and showcase leadership and commitment, like H&M Group, Ingka Group (IKEA), Kingfisher and Walmart.”

Bakker added: “The climate emergency, together with the loss of nature and rising inequalities, are the greatest and most complex challenges of our time. Only by joining forces and collectively rethinking the industries, like retail, will it be possible to tackle them. Governments, investors and businesses are uniting to support a pathway to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5°C, in line with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement – the only viable way for people and planet.”

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