SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Today, at the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in San Francisco, CA, twenty-one companies will announce the launch of the Step Up Declaration, a new alliance dedicated to harnessing the power of emerging technologies and the fourth industrial revolution to help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across all economic sectors and ensure a climate turning point by 2020.

Declaration signatories include several established climate leaders: Akamai Technologies, Arm, Autodesk, Bloomberg, BT, Cisco Systems, Ericsson, HP, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Lyft, Nokia, Salesforce, Supermicro, Symantec, Tech Mahindra, Uber, Vigilent, VMware, WeWork, Workday, and Zoox. Collectively these organizations cover a broad range of industries capable of delivering significant GHG emissions cuts across buildings, data-centers, finance, telecoms, transport and more.

Recognizing the opportunity to take action and help mitigate the worst potential impacts of global warming, the signatories behind the Step Up Declaration are joining forces in response to a challenge issued in May, 2018 by Christiana Figueres, Convenor of Mission 2020. Figueres’ challenge urged the technology sector to dramatically “step up” climate action, to demonstrate their own progress ahead of 2020, and show how they can intentionally help the rest of the global economy decarbonize.

The Step Up Declaration was developed with leadership from Salesforce, the global leader in CRM. It refers to the transformative power of the fourth industrial revolution, which encompasses artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT). In addition, the declaration acknowledges the role its signatories can play in demonstrating and enabling progress both in their immediate spheres of influence and “collaboratively with others— across all sectors of society, including individuals, corporations, civil society, and governments.”

Existing technologies currently influence the decisions of three billion people daily through eCommerce, search and social media, and are at the heart of business and investor decisions. These technologies and the companies behind them have the potential to both profoundly impact the transition to a fossil fuel free economy, and also influence whether we live on a 1.5-2°C planet (climate stable), or in a +3°C (climate catastrophe) world.

The Step Up Declaration also includes a series of individual commitments detailing specific supporting actions.

Christiana Figueres said: “The influence of the fourth industrial revolution impacts us all. When that incredible force is primed to catalyze exponential shifts in GHG emissions reductions across all sectors of the economy, we can be stubbornly optimistic about delivering a liveable planet to our children within the timeframe we have left to do so.”

The Step Up Declaration and supporting commitments will be integrated with the Global Climate Action Summit’s official outcomes and a larger call to action to national leaders to accelerate their country’s respective progress under the Paris Agreement by 2020.

The high level session “Disrupting Climate Disruption – Tech, Innovation, and a Climate Safe Future”, at 4pm PT in the Moscone Center, includes a panel discussion about the Declaration featuring Suzanne DiBianca, EVP of Corporate Relations and Chief Philanthropy Officer for Salesforce, Lakshmanan Chidambaram, President, Americas Strategic Verticals for Tech Mahindra, and Miguel McKelvey, Co-Founder and Chief Culture Officer of WeWork.

The session also includes an overview of the Exponential Climate Action Roadmap, a new report from a unique consortium of tech companies, NGOs and scientific organisations (Stockholm Resilience Centre, Sitra, Future Earth, Ericsson & WWF and others) that shows among others) that shows that it is possible for emissions to halve by 2030, after peaking by 2020. Furthermore, the thirty solutions for halving emissions by around 2030 are technologically feasible and economically attractive but needs acceleration through climate leadership, coherent ambitious policies and digitalization. The report provides new analysis on how technology and behavioural change can accelerate action towards this goal and introduces eight game-changing strategies to cross a tipping point for global action on climate.

The individual company commitments supporting the Step Up Declaration include:

Bloomberg will integrate climate risk and opportunity analytics across all financial products and asset classes, and expand sustainable finance capabilities into all major industry products and services by 2020.

BT will help its customers reduce carbon emissions by at least three times the end-to-end carbon impact of its business by 2020.

HPE will enable 80 percent of manufacturing suppliers, by spend, to set science-based targets in their own operations, potentially preventing the equivalent of 100 million metric tons of emissions by 2025.

Salesforce is committed to achieving 100% Renewable Energy by 2022, has committed to setting a Science Based Target, will partner with its top suppliers to set their own emissions reduction targets by 2025, and is expanding its green real estate strategy by committing to align with LEED V4 Platinum standards and Net Zero Carbon Buildings certification for all major new offices after 2020.

Supermicro is introducing a new metric, “Total Cost to the Environment,” for IT leaders to measure their data centers’ environmental impact by urging them to incorporate Resource-Saving technologies into their plans to help the data centers reach an average PUE of 1.30 and reduce their E-waste by 2025.

Tech Mahindra will create the first ever global ‘AI for Action’ movement for climate via a new competition, organized by GCAS and its associate companies, that will deliver real solution for climate action. Tech Mahindra is committed to the sustainability goals, and is investing in specific initiatives including achieving carbon neutrality (15 per cent reduction in Scope 1-2 GHG Emissions by 2020-21).

Vigilent and our partners will use AI to eliminate wasteful cooling in data centers and telecom facilities, cutting annual carbon emissions by 50 million metric tons by 2025.

Full details of the supporting company commitments can be viewed here.

Supporting quotes:

“Through the collective and collaborative action of the world’s leading companies we can make great progress towards addressing climate change, and create a brighter future for all. At Akamai, we are committed to renewable energy-powering our global network operations through direct procurement, collaborations with our customers, and encouraging our data center suppliers to decarbonize their operations”. – Nicola Peill-Moelter, PhD, Senior Director Environmental Sustainability, Akamai Technologies

“Technology has the potential to have a huge impact as we work together globally to address the issue of climate change, and Arm will be at the heart of many of the solutions that emerge to make energy use smarter and more efficient. We believe in harnessing technology for the good of the environment and societies worldwide, so we are proud to be part of the Step Up Declaration and encourage others to do the same.” – Graham Budd, President and COO, Arm

“At Autodesk, we are committed to harnessing the power of automation technology to increase our collective ability and capacity to design and make things better. We are proud to be a part of the Step Up Declaration, and are doubling-down on our commitment to support our customers to lead the way in designing and making a low carbon resilient future.” – Lynelle Cameron, Vice President of Sustainability, Autodesk, President & CEO, Autodesk Foundation

“To solve the climate challenge, we need leadership from the private sector. We are excited to collaborate with our partners in the Step Up: Powering Mission 2020 Declaration to drive investment and deployment of innovative, energy-smart technology, creating new business solutions to address our collective climate challenge.” – Curtis Ravenel, Global Head of Sustainable Business & Finance, Bloomberg

“BT, alongside other world-leading businesses, is keen to empower and accelerate climate action worldwide. The ICT sector has the power to catalyse carbon reduction throughout all sectors of the economy. Last year, BT’s products helped our customers cut their carbon emissions by 11.3 million tonnes, for example through video conferencing and vehicle telematics. We are continuing to roll out our pioneering contract clause which requires a supplier to reduce carbon emissions and energy consumption over the term of their contract with BT”. – Andy Wales, Chief Digital Impact and Sustainability Officer, BT

“Cisco networking technology is transforming our global economy, creating new products and services, and raising living standards across developed and emerging markets. With more Internet users, more network connections and increasing network traffic, we want our products to use electricity wisely. Our new product energy efficiency goal sets a benchmark for efficiency in our industry and demonstrates how innovation can drive both economic growth and environmental sustainability.” – Marco Croci, SVP, Hardware Engineering, Cisco Systems

“As a sustainability pioneer in the private-sector, we have been both an advocate of climate action and investing in research and development of climate solutions. We understand the urgency for action. We believe leveraging new technology, such as digitalization and 5G, will be fundamental to reduce carbon emissions by half every decade i.e. meet the Carbon Law. As a company, we have cut our own emissions by 50 percent and are working to meet further reduction targets. We have demonstrated solutions that help make it possible and now other companies and policy-makers must join the quest for broader adoption of solutions to enable exponential reduction of carbon emissions globally. – Börje Ekholm, CEO and President, Ericsson

“At HP, we know that swift and bold action must be taken to address the root causes of climate change. With one of the largest IT supply chains in the world, we are uniquely positioned to influence the industry and drive more sustainable production and consumption around the world. Through transformative technologies like our 3D printing solutions designed for industrial-scale manufacturing environments and new service-based and circular business models, we are changing how our products are produced, delivered, and re-used to reduce their impacts. We are proud to stand with other like-minded companies that are dedicated to combating climate change and transforming the world into a more sustainable global economy.” – Nate Hurst, Chief Sustainability and Social Impact Officer, HP

“We’re already seeing the benefits of our commitment to aggressive climate targets, from increased innovation, to reduced regulatory uncertainty and strengthened investor confidence. It’s imperative we transition to low-carbon business models in order to compete and succeed in the 21st century.” – Christopher Wellise, Chief Sustainability Officer, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

“At Lyft, we feel it’s immensely important to take responsibility for our environmental impact. Climate change is not waiting – it’s happening now, and it presents a clear and immediate threat to our world and those who live in it. We’re excited to be a part of this important alliance of organizations dedicated to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fighting climate change – and we’ve taken the first step by offsetting the carbon emissions from all Lyft rides globally, making all Lyft rides carbon-neutral going forward.” – Sam Arons, Director of Sustainability, Lyft

“At Nokia, our ultimate aim is to create a zero emissions digital society. Through our science-based targets, we are committed to reducing emissions from our operations by 41 percent by 2030, while enabling our customers to reduce theirs by 75 percent”. – Petteri Rantanen, Chief Security Officer and Head of Health, Safety, Security and Environment, Nokia

“At Salesforce, we believe that business is one of the greatest platforms for change. We are committed to doing our part to step up to the urgent challenge of climate change, ensure a just transition to a low carbon economy and provide a healthy future for all. We are excited to be a leader not only in forming this declaration, but also in our sustainability commitments on our path towards 100 percent renewable energy by 2022.” – Suzanne DiBianca, Executive Vice President of Corporate Relations and Chief Philanthropy Officer, Salesforce

“Data centers are critical to the continued advancement and evolution of our global society, which is why we are urging IT leaders to begin measuring the TCE (Total Cost to the Environment) of their facilities. As the innovative leader in energy efficient systems and green computing technology for data centers, Supermicro has developed environmentally conscious Resource-Saving server and storage technologies offering the best solutions for our precious Mother Earth.” – Charles Liang, CEO and President, Supermicro

“Symantec is committed to helping organizations and individuals secure their most important data wherever it lives. Our potential to protect the future depends directly on recognizing the limits of our planetary resources. Collaborative commitments like the StepUp declaration show that business is serious about its responsibility – and ability – to support a safe and sustainable future.” – Cecily Joseph, Vice President Corporate Responsibility, Symantec

“As part of the Mahindra Group, Tech Mahindra is committed to reducing its global carbon footprint. The ‘Step-up Declaration’ is a milestone in our journey towards creating a safer and sustainable planet. As a leading global digital transformation provider, we are committed to leveraging next gen technologies like Artificial Intelligence that will enable a sustainable society. We are excited to collaborate with our partners and create the first ever global ‘AI for Action’ movement” – CP Gurnani, MD & CEO, Tech Mahindra

“Transportation systems dominated by personal car ownership are inefficient and unsustainable. Uber is committed to improving mobility by promoting shared, electric rides and integrating new modes of transportation like bikes and scooters. We want to help save fuel, improve air quality and reduce transportation carbon intensity with every journey.” – Rachel Holt, Vice President and Head of New Modalities, Uber

“Technology can be one of the most powerful weapons in the battle against climate change. Already we are seeing the Fourth Industrial Revolution deliver significant carbon reductions. It’s our collective responsibility to deploy such technologies at scale to help ensure that the planet is habitable for future generations.” – Dave Hudson, CEO, Vigilent

“Now more than ever, the tech community has a responsibility to engage and act. This applies not only to our own businesses but also to shaping global policy and regulatory frameworks to ensure that technology serves the greater good.” – Nicola Acutt, VP of Sustainability Strategy, VMware

“WeWork is part of a growing global community that is dedicated to driving meaningful positive impact. As a company, we believe in taking action and embracing new ideas. Whether through our commitment to be a meat-free organization, phasing out our use of disposable plastics and leather furniture, or committing to be carbon neutral by 2023, we believe we have both the responsibility and the opportunity to create change. We are committed to informing, engaging and empowering our employees and our members. We are proud to join Governor Brown and the leaders assembled here to advance the conversation and together, help shape a better future.” – Miguel McKelvey, co-founder and Chief culture officer, WeWork

“Zoox is proud to commit that it’s entire vehicle fleet will be 100 percent battery electric- bringing a clean, shared, and wonderful mobility experience to our cities.” – Jesse Levinson, Co-founder, President, and Chief Technology Officer, Zoox Inc.


Hashtags: #4IRforCLIMATE #StepUp2020

Media Contact:
Nick Nuttall
Spokesperson & Director of Communications
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Joseph Giumarra
Havas PR
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