UN Campaign Seeks to Catalyse Industry Breakthroughs in Pursuit of Net Zero Emissions

A paper identifying key tipping-points for climate action across more than 20 sectors of the global economy is to be published today, outlining the technological breakthroughs key actors must deliver in order to put the world on track to net zero emissions by 2050.
Named “The Race to Zero Breakthroughs”, the paper is to be launched at the World Economic Forum by COP26 President Alok Sharma and his predecessor, COP25 President Carolina Schmidt, alongside UNFCCC executive secretary Patricia Espinosa.
“It is vital that businesses go net zero, as part of our fight against climate change,” said Sharma. “Which is why we look to all sectors to reach a point at which a clean way of operating becomes the norm.”
The Race to Zero Breakthroughs were drawn from the Climate Action Pathways, a set of roadmaps developed under the Marrakech Partnership that waslaunched at the COP24 UN Climate Summit in 2018 which cover all sectors of the economy and aim to establish how different industries can decarbonise in line with keeping temperature increases below 1.5C.
One member of the Marrakech Partnership, the Mission Possible Partnership, yesterday unveiled a new platform seeking to drive progress towards key breakthroughs in seven of the most energy-intensive industries, including steel and shipping.
“The Mission Possible Partnership is delighted to act as the delivery mechanism for Race to Zero Breakthroughs in sectors where emissions are still hard to abate,” said Anthony Hobley, executive director of Mission Possible.
“Beginning with seven of the most energy-intensive industries, the partnership’s work will build on growing momentum, investor pressure, consumer expectations, and analytical tools to design and execute net zero pathways for those industries, their customers, their suppliers, and their capital providers.”
The new paper is now calling on actors covering 20 per cent of their sector to commit to pursuing each highlighted breakthrough, with local governments, businesses, and investors urged to target the deliver of breakthroughs in at least 10 sectors of the economy in advance of the COP26 Climate Summit in Glasgow.
“We cannot win the Race to Zero by racing alone,” said said Gonzalo Muñoz, COP25 climate champion. “Only by collaborating in wholesale systems transformation can we upgrade the sectors of our global economy to deliver a healthy, resilient, zero-carbon future. These sectoral breakthroughs will allow us to go further and faster in our race to zero emissions.”
His comments were echoed by Christiana Figueres, co-founder of the Global Optimism think tank and former executive secretary of UNFCCC, who argued “the Race to Zero emissions can only be won well before 2050 if all leaders come together in radical collaboration, to deliver Breakthroughs in every sector”.
“Now is your moment to choose to commit yourselves,” she added. “We have the tools, technologies and resources at our disposal. All that matters now is deploying them as rapidly as possible.”

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