How carbon offsetting could be part of a net zero ambition

In this episode of the Sustainability Matters podcast, Bruno Sarda speaks to Jennifer Leitsch and Cynthia Curtis about the challenges and opportunities of achieving net zero.

The theme of Earth Day 2022 is “invest in our planet” — and can be seen as a direct call to businesses and investors to act on reducing their adverse environmental impact. In the lead-up to Earth Day, Jennifer Leitsch, Managing Director in the Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) practice at Ernst & Young LLP, spoke to Cynthia Curtis, Senior Vice President for Sustainability at JLL, about the challenges and opportunities of ambitious net zero goals, and the actions the real estate and construction sector, a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions,1 should take now to achieve them.

Earth Day 2022’s thematic shift from citizen activism to corporate action poses some important questions on industry actions and accountability. While carbon offsetting can often be described as one of the answers to a business’s carbon emissions, it is unlikely to be the only solution. And as offsetting measurements come under increased scrutiny, how can proposals such as the “Carbon Credit Quality Initiative,” spearheaded by the World Wildlife Fund and the Environmental Defense Fund, help provide confidence in credible and verifiable offsets?

The collaborations among organizations can be an important step toward reaching net zero emissions. Public-private partnerships, governments and long-term policy changes could also be important to building a low-carbon economy, and helping incentivize more green business practices that are both ethical and lucrative.

Many industries are increasingly aware of the possibility to have a sustainable and thriving business. Cynthia and Jennifer discuss why it’s time for businesses of all shapes and sizes to act.

Key takeaways include

  • Tackling climate change has become less about individual activism and more about corporate action.
  • Global ambitions of carbon neutrality have led to an increase in carbon offsetting, prompting a greater need for a standardized calculation system.
  • Offsetting can be part of the solution. Market-based guidelines, such as carbon tax, could significantly accelerate change across global business.
  • Public-private partnerships can be important in building the low-carbon economy.
  • While the real estate and construction sector has lagged in setting ambitious emissions targets, third-party organizations could be important to supporting responsible growth in the sector. 

For your convenience, full text transcript of this podcast is also available. Read the transcript.

Presenters

Bruno Sarda
Principal, Climate Change & Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young LLP

Podcast

Season 4, Episode 4

Duration 26m 19s

In this series

Series overview
(Event List - Manual)

How the Sustainability Matters podcast is looking ahead in 2022

The Sustainability Matters podcast welcomes its new host, Bruno Sarda, highlighting the issues that will likely inform ESG matters in the coming year and outlining his vision for the series.
Podcast

Season 4, Episode 3

Duration
22m 58s

Presenters

Bruno Sarda

Principal, Climate Change & Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young LLP

How businesses can turn COP26 outcomes into future actions

In this episode of the Sustainability Matters podcast, Steve Varley – EY Global Vice Chair of Sustainability – discusses the impact, outcomes and importance of actioning key COP26 takeaways.
Podcast

Season 4, Episode 2

Duration
28m 28s

Presenters

Steve Varley

EY Global Senior Advisor

How redefining the circular economy could reshape a sustainable planet

Chris Hagler welcomes Antonis Mavropoulos and Mark Weick to discuss how a circular economy may lead to a more sustainable planet.
Podcast

Season 4, Episode 1

Duration
34m 45s

Presenters

Mark Weick

Managing Director, Climate Change and Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young LLP

How to use products and packaging to advance the circular economy

This episode discusses how product design and manufacturing can advance the circular economy by reducing the impacts of consumer products.
Podcast

Season 3, Episode 4

Duration
38m 05s

Presenters

Mark Weick

Managing Director, Climate Change and Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young LLP

How to engage employees for ESG goals

In this episode of Sustainability Matters podcast, WeSpire Founder Susan Hunt Stevens shares best practices in achieving a company’s ESG goals.
Podcast

Season 3, Episode 3

Duration
39m 20s

Presenters

EY Global

Ernst & Young Global Ltd.

How companies are inspiring change through climate commitments

In this episode of Sustainability Matters podcast, EY market leaders and Chris Hagler discuss how businesses slow down the climate crisis.
Podcast

Season 3, Episode 2

Duration
35m 33s

Presenters

Stephen J. Auton-Smith

Ernst & Young Infrastructure Advisors, LLC, Senior Managing Director

How to use sustainability to build an enterprise

In this episode, EY’s Chris Hagler and Cox Cleantech Vice President Steve Bradley discuss the importance of sustainability in a business.
Podcast

Season 3, Episode 1

Duration
40m 56s

Presenters

How to integrate natural capital into business decision making

EY’s Chris Hagler welcomes Mark Gough and Carter Ingram to discuss the integration of natural capital into corporate decision making.
Podcast

Season 2, Episode 6

Duration
36m 27s

Presenters