Press Release (14 December, 2017)
More than 50 World Leaders Deliberate on the Second Anniversary of Paris Climate agreement in France at the One Planet Summit
Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus spoke at a roundtable discussion titled 'Accelerating local and regional climate action' during the One Planet Summit in Paris hosted by President Emmanuel Macron of France. Other distinguished panelists, from left to right, are John Kerry, former Secretary of State of the United States, Isabelle Kocher, CEO of ENGIE, largest energy company in France, Geraldine Amiel, Paris Bureau Chief, Bloomberg News and moderator of the panel, and Jean-Louis Chaussade, CEO of Suez.
Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus urged the global community towards building circular economy as way forward to tackle the climate change challenges at the ‘One Planet Summit’ in France. Professor Yunus made these remarks during the plenary session of the conference which was organized in the second anniversary of the adoption of the historic Paris climate agreement; the President of France Emmanuel Macron hosted a wide array of public and private sector leaders at the “One Planet Summit.”
In his remarks he said, "An important methodology to achieve zero net carbon is social business. You asked us to talk about business not as usual. Social business is indeed business not as usual. It takes personal profit off the table. It is non--dividend company.” He shared the examples of Grameen Shakti; how social business can have tangible impact in tackling climate issues effectively and sustainably. Collectively Bangladesh has 4 million home with solar home systems now and out of the total number, 2 million are installed by Grameen Shakti. Government’s renewable energy agency, IDCOL, has been assisting to finance the solar energy outreach in Bangladesh, he added
Professor Yunus also discussed about the massive wastes our modern civilizations is generating. One such waste is plastic which he said is killing us. He highlighted a recycling initiative he is taking as social business in Vietnam with support from WWF to clean up Mekong river from plastic waste. He emphasized that we needed to recycle automobile tires too. He mentioned that it was strange that less than 7 percent of tires are re-used. The rest create pollution. He is initiating a recycling project of tired tires too. Another issue , food waste is also a big challenge that is creating pressure on the planet. By recycling waste vegetables to bring them back into food chain can save huge natural resources. Already a big social business company Bon et Bien has been operating in France.
Professor Yunus said, “it is entrepreneurship and social businesses which will go a long way in saving the world . We should be preparing ourselves for creating circular economy. Nothing should go out of the use.” Professor Yunus also participated in a high level panel with global energy experts during the One Planet Summit.
The Summit was co-hosted by the Secretary General of UN and the President of World Bank group.