“Climate heating greenhouse gases hit a new high, UN reports” is a news report published on The Guardian news website in November 2019. This news was written by Carrington Damian. The author of this news provides an analysis of climate change and the effects of the greenhouse. Clavero et al. (2011) saw climate change as a significant issue that is changing biological processes and having huge impacts on biodiversity. When there is a rise in temperature, the earth will be affected and this has led to not just environmental, but also social, economic and political challenges. For example, rising temperatures can create an outcome where there is intense droughts or rain, as well as harsh heat waves. Water Bodies like seas, glaciers, and oceans have also undergone some changes: glaciers are seen melting, sea levels are also rising, and oceans are becoming acidic and warming up.
The author of this news indicated that in the past century, human activities have contributed greatly to the great amounts of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide that has been released into the atmosphere. Most of the gases come from burning fossil fuels to produce energy which is the driving force of today\'s economy and business. The effects of a Warmer climate is that it brings about changes that can affect our agriculture, water supplies, power and transportation systems, the natural environment, and even our health and safety. The news report also mentioned that the key factors fueling pressures and tensions over access to water, food, and energy would be climate change and extreme weather. This is to say that climate change is a big challenge because of the issues like an increase in the price of food, and when combined with population growth it can also raise the risk of conflict between livestock owners and farmers.
Relation of Business to Climate change
The news article stated that business is a key contributor to climate change, this is due to the impact of the industrial revolution which has “sparked the wild spread burning of coal, oil, and gas”(Carrington, 2019). Industrial activities are usually business roles that modern civilization depends upon, these activities have raised the CO2 level by 50% from when it was last compared between 1750 to 2018(Carrington,2019)( see figure 1). All these are mostly derived from the involvement of business, but every aspect of today\'s industry knows that one way or the other they will be impacted by climate change.
If properly done, businesses can also play a key role in addressing the challenges of climate change. Innovative initiatives from businesses are part of the global shift that will create large scale opportunities that can help with tackling climate change. Low Carbon Technology Partnerships Initiative (LCTPi) is an example of a global initiative that is led by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) to quicken the development of low-carbon technologies and scale up their distribution. Another example of an energy industry that is a leading figure in the business world for the promotion of eradicating climate change is the Exxon Mobil. Exxon Mobil provides extensive funding to range organizations that are skeptical about global warming, they have invested millions into research to help create sustainable businesses (McCarron,2020). These show that not only are businesses, key contributor to climate change but they can also play a huge role in addressing the issue.
CSR and climate change
It has already been established that business plays a very important role in climate change. Businesses can successfully apply their CSR to control and prevent climate change. Businesses who engage with CSR can give the company a good reputation, which in return yields profit. Climate changes are commonly recognized as environmental, hence a corporate social responsibility issue. (Guo & Yang, 2017). Thus, it is ideal for businesses to apply theoretical models established in CSR. Corporate social responsibility will also help in showing how dedicated and committed a business is in trying to address social issues and their responsibility in creating sustainability.
Other stakeholders like NGOs and Government have played a major role in protecting the environment and making sure that business fulfills its legal requirements that are considered as corporate social responsibility activity. NGOs are setting higher prospects for the business sector to decrease their emissions and take accountability for its contribution to climate challenges. For example, in 2015, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NDRC) issued the 13th five-year program to control greenhouse emissions which instructed the local government to set a target on the energy and carbon intensity for the aim of reducing the rate of emissions. (Lin, 2016). Finally, observing CSR is a way for businesses and other contributors to climate change to help in safeguarding the future of their customers, and save millions of lives
Addressing the issues of climate change
Climate change can be addressed in numerous ways but proposing a reduction in the use of fossil fuels or even a complete switch to renewable energy can help manage the issue of climate change. Most developed countries are shifting their investments to renewable energy from fossil fuels (Shah, J. (2019)). However, the lives of citizens and the profit made by some businesses rely on the comforts brought by fossil fuels, ranging from plastic bags to power stations, and even petroleum jelly body creams. We can try to employ alternatives to these fossil fuel comforts that humans are so used to. For example, plant-based plastics or renewable energy generated electricity. NGOs can also help with managing the challenges created by climate change by focusing on communities and putting pressure on policymakers to create problem-solving strategies to combat climate changes. The government, on the other hand, can establish effective awareness concerning the environmental impacts of climate change, thereby implementing it to the curriculum of the educational system to protect the future.
To sum it all up, climate change as mentioned in the news article is an environmental issue that requires all stakeholders to partake urgently in trying to resolve this issue, and with the help of corporate social responsibility(CSR) it can be made possible but it takes time and commitment. Climate change affects everyone, and so urgent actions should be taken or the future of humanity stands at a huge risk.