The Business Case for Responsible Corporate Adaptation

Four Twenty Seven was the lead author on the latest Caring for Climate report on responsible corporate adaptation, developed in cooperation with the UN Global Compact, UNFCCC and UNEP, and their partners.

With this new publication, Caring for Climate compiles and showcases a wide range of corporate and public-private adaptation practices in different sectors and regions in order to:

  • Raise awareness about the benefits of implementing climate risk assessments, and inform companies about subsequent adaptation activities that can be taken to mitigate those risks.
  • Inspire other companies, regardless of size and geography, to implement private adaptation strategies and activities that also contribute to increasing societal resilience and meeting the SDGs.
  • Highlight opportunities for policymakers to address the barriers that may hinder corporate adaptation activities.
The report, The Business Case for Responsible Corporate Adaptation: Strengthening Private Sector and Community Resilience explores the business case for responsible corporate adaptation to climate change. It provides a conceptual framework and tools, supported by a series of in-depth case studies of companies taking the lead in building resilience and adaptation strategies.
How businesses support community resilience.
How businesses support community resilience.
Responsible corporate adaptation encompasses the strategies, actions and partnerships through which businesses adapt to climate impacts and at the same time create shared resilience benefits for the communities and ecosystems where they operate. The report shows that when companies take action to support and empower the communities they depend on, they also reap the benefits.
Download the full report here.

Report Summary

WhatIsRCAChapter 1

Chapter 1 discusses the definition and benefits of responsible corporate adaptation. The case studies featured in the report show that companies engage in corporate adaptation to achieve one or several business benefits: improving their operations and competitiveness; protecting their value chain; leveraging new business opportunities; and strengthening their corporate brand. The case studies illustrate how community vulnerability to climate change risks can be factored into analysis and decision-making processes and highlight the projects’ business and community benefits.

Chapter 2

BarrierstoCorpAdaptChapter 2 builds on recent literature and the collection of case studies featured in this report to identify barriers to corporate adaptation, and highlights how the companies profiled overcame those barriers. The key barriers identified include information gaps and risk uncertainty, the challenges in integrating short-term and long-term planning, the lack of incentives, challenges in accessing financing, and policy, regulatory and socio-cultural barriers.

Chapter 3

Chapter 3 presents a compilation of 17 case studies of responsible corporate adaptation. The projects span several sectors and regions of the world (see map below), and incorporate diverse solutions to an equally diverse set of climate risks. Each case study examines a specific climate risk threatening the company’s operations, and explores the innovative process undertaken to address related concerns.

Chapter 4

Recommendations for Business Leaders
Recommendations for Business Leaders

Chapter 4 closes with recommendations for business leaders and policymakers on how to accelerate responsible corporate adaptation, strengthen collaboration and incentivize the development of adaptation solutions.

Key recommendations for business leaders include:
  • Identify critical climate risks and uncover opportunities;
  • Determine your company’s climate adaptation strategy;
  • Develop strategic partnerships focused on shared value creation;
  • Report on progress and increase transparency.

For policymakers, the recommendations are:

  • Build a foundation for private sector investments  and action;
  • Align public and private adaptation interests;
  • Leverage private resources and market forces for the public good.
Map of case studies featured in the report
Map of case studies featured in the report
Download the full report here.

About the Authors

A Caring for Climate Report by the United Nations Global Compact (UN Global Compact), the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), in cooperation with UNEP DTU Partnership, CDP, CEO Water Mandate, Four Twenty Seven, Oxfam, Rainforest Alliance, ARISE (through PwC), University of Notre Dame (ND -GAIN) and World Resources Institute (WRI).