The Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) today announced that it has joined the Climate Governance Initiative, as host of the Australian Chapter.
The Climate Governance Initiative is a rapidly expanding network with over 20 bodies globally, including in the UK, US, Canada and France, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum. Chapters promote the World Economic Forum’s Climate Governance Principles and support effective climate governance in their jurisdictions.
AICD CEO and Managing Director, Angus Armour said, “The AICD is excited to host the Australian chapter of this leading global forum on climate change governance.
“Climate risk is no longer an issue facing select sectors, but a standing item on many board agendas and our goal is to deepen the conversation on climate governance in Australia.
“We are excited to collaborate through the Climate Governance Initiative with experts and directors in Australia and around the world, all confronting similar issues,” Mr Armour said.
Through the Climate Governance Initiative, Australian directors will have access to local and international resources and events and contribute to the global network.
A working group has been convened to guide development of the Climate Governance Initiative in Australia, to include a governance forum of climate governance experts and non-executive directors which together with the AICD will support the Australian Chapter.
Chairman of the Governing Board of CGI and Board Director of Eni S.p.A, Karina Litvack, said, “Across the world, directors are recognising the crucial role they have to play in the business response to the climate emergency, and are enhancing their capabilities to ensure long-term stewardship of the companies on whose boards they serve.
“We are delighted that the AICD is hosting the Climate Governance Initiative and has committed to providing directors in Australia with access to the skills and knowledge necessary to transition to a low carbon economy, and ensure the long-term resilience and business success of their companies.”
Over half of respondents to the AICD’s latest Director Sentiment Index reported that they consider climate change to be a material risk for their organisation and one in five directors see it as one of the top three economic challenges facing Australian business.
Directors also nominated climate change as a key short and long-term priority for the Federal Government.
Mr Armour said, “We need a clear, predictable set of rules from government to allow business to plan and that’s why the AICD also encourages the Australian government to commit to achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions across the economy by 2050.”
To mark the launch of the Initiative in Australia, the AICD in collaboration with MinterEllison, has released a Director Guide to Climate Risk Governance, covering:
• How directors can start and continue on their climate governance journey; • An introduction to climate governance concepts; and
• The directors’ role in climate governance.
Later this year the AICD will also launch a Director Insights report, featuring case studies and views from directors on governing climate risk as well as a recent survey of climate governance practice, through the Australian Chapter. Refer to the Climate Governance Initiative Australia webpage for further details.