CHAPTER ZERO CELEBRATES FIRST ANNIVERSARY
**More than 900 Non-Executive members actively engaged in strategic debate about the climate challenge**
**47 FTSE100 Boards have at least one member; 97 FTSE250**
**Chapter Zero’s ambition is to secure 2,000 members by COP26**
London, June 24, 2020
Chapter Zero celebrates its first anniversary today. Founded in 2019 as part of the World Economic Forum’s Climate Governance Initiative, its purpose is to enable Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) in UK boardrooms to engage effectively in a strategic debate about the climate challenge for their businesses, including how they will contribute to achieving the Government’s target of net-zero emissions by 2050. Over the last year Chapter Zero has become a board-level community of more than 900 members, with 47 FTSE100 and 97 FTSE250 boards having at least one director in the network. The longer-term aspiration is to secure 2,000 members by COP 26, which will take place in Glasgow in November 2021.
Across more than thirty events this year with leading academics, regulators, investors and government figures, Chapter Zero has convened conversations with the influencers and authorities at the forefront of climate debate. In April, the ‘Directors’ Climate Journey’ launched, which sets out eight steps to help NEDs respond to the climate challenge.
Mark Tucker, Group Chairman, HSBC Holdings plc, Chair, The CityUK, and founding Chapter Zero Chair, commented: “Over the last year, concerns over the impact of continued carbon emissions and global temperature rises have sharpened. The Covid-19 crisis has pushed these issues even more to the fore. With the focus now on rebuilding the economy and businesses choosing to invest in resilience, it is more important than ever that directors ensure that their organisations create sustainable value for stakeholders. Chapter Zero plays an important role in equipping them with the knowledge and tools they need. I look forward to continuing our progress.”
David Tyler, Chair of Hammerson plc and fellow founding Chapter Zero Chair, said: “It has been a remarkable year. I am delighted with our progress. Climate change is now firmly a boardroom issue. It challenges whole business models. From a standing start, Chapter Zero’s purpose has been to create a climate community that enables UK NEDs to have meaningful climate conversations. Together, we are doing all we can to ensure climate change continues to be addressed in the British boardroom.”
Sarah Bates, Chair of Merian Global Investors, Polar Capital Technology Trust and another founding Chair, added: “Never has it been more important for firms to measure, monitor and communicate their progress on varying indicators of sustainable or responsible business practices. Look no further than the Financial Conduct Authority’s recent proposal that all main London-listed companies must make climate-related disclosures as prescribed by the Financial Stability Board’s Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures — or explain why they cannot. It is becoming vital that boards understand the impact of climate change so they can make better informed and more strategic decisions.”
Julie Baddeley, Chair of the Chapter Zero Steering Committee, commented: “We are not alone in making our first year a success. It wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our partners at the CBI, ICAEW, Carbon Trust, The Royal Institution and The Centre For Climate Change Engagement at Hughes Hall, University of Cambridge. On behalf of everyone involved in Chapter Zero I would like to extend our heartfelt thanks.”
Chapter Zero will continue to build a board-level climate community to exchange ideas, share experiences, facilitate cooperation, and access tools that actively inform and enable our climate conversations. https://www.chapterzero.org.uk/join-us/
Chapter Zero is supported by a Chair group comprising Sarah Bates, Chair of Merian Global Investors and Polar Capital Technology Trust; Richard Gillingwater, Chair of SSE plc and Janus Henderson Group; Sir John Kingman, Chair of Legal and General plc; Mark Tucker, Group Chairman, HSBC Holdings plc, Chair, The CityUK; and David Tyler, Chair of Hammerson plc.
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NOTES FOR EDITORS
Chapter Zero is a forum where the NED community can enhance its knowledge, understanding and experience of this complex and critical business challenge. It does this by:
- Creating a network of NEDs across a range of sectors who are committed to engaging with the climate challenge through the board agenda
- Running climate change briefings, round tables, workshops and conferences with our partners – all relevant for the Board agenda
- Making members aware of other relevant events they may wish to attend: for example on risk assessment, reporting, scenario planning, opportunity assessment, decision analysis
- Bringing together investors, regulators, company directors, plus key experts to learn from and influence each others’ perspectives
- Making available briefing materials, toolkits, films, and online education to enable directors to develop their knowledge
- Developing a catalogue of where to go for help as an engaged board
- Giving access to the World Economic Forum online materials
- Providing a forum where directors can share experience and debate issues
Chapter Zero Steering Committee:
- Julie Baddeley, Chair
- Carol Bell
- Rosemary Boot
- Susan Hooper
- Robert Jennings
- Gillian Karran-Cumberlege
- Karina Litvack
- Patrick Mitchell
Further details of Chapter Zero’ goals and forthcoming activities, as well as enrolment information for membership, can be found on www.chapterzero.org.uk.
Chapter Zero Limited, registered as a company limited by guarantee (12062028) in England and Wales.