Letter: A job too big for business and capital markets alone

Thank you to Pilita Clark for bringing environmental reality back into politics (Opinion, August 3).

With the Tory leadership campaign skimming over climate in its debates and the UK announcing it will publish only seven of its 24 environmental indicators in 2022 — many businesses will be wondering how they can be expected to meet targets, hold stakeholders to account and publish data in line with pledges if the government isn’t leading by example.

We know the pitfalls of taking transparency and data out of environmental reporting — one in five climate-related environmental, social and governance risk incidents are linked to greenwashing, as it becomes all too easy to do. Government and business alike must bridge the gap between intent and behavior via an honest appraisal of whether they are upholding their claims and pledges.

In the face of the growing backlash against the constraints imposed by ESG, it is clear that capital markets and business cannot drive this change alone. Governments need to do their part.

Climate risks need to be tackled head-on — in the boardroom and on the campaign trail.

Alexandra Mihailescu Cichon
Executive Vice President, RepRisk
Former Sustainability Officer, Credit Suisse, Zurich, Switzerland

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