One of the leaders of the Romanian banking market, BRD Groupe Société Générale, as initiator and founding partner together with Social Innovation Solutions (SIS), an organisation active in the fields of sustainability, social impact and innovation, will organise the Climate Change Summit on 4-5 October 2022, at the Odeon Theatre in Bucharest, as well as other connected events at the Palace of Parliament and Victoria Palace.
The event is the first Summit in Romania dedicated to climate change and aims at becoming an annual benchmark event for national and European leaders in the field as well as at identifying solutions applicable at local and regional levels in the field of climate policy and sustainability. Among the most important topics, the Summit’s first edition will touch upon are the transition to a green economy, sustainable finance and investment, sustainable solutions in energy, agriculture and the food industry and how technologies such as AI or Blockchain can become tools able to counter the effects of climate change.
In 2021, the European Union set out to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 per cent and achieve climate neutrality by 2050, while more than a third of Europe’s largest companies have also committed to the net-zero target by 2050. However, according to a study updated in early 2022 by the United Nations, many of the effects of global warming are already irreversible. As such, in the last two years, over 150 countries, including Romania, have published comprehensive strategies aimed at limiting their impact on the environment and slowing down the pace of climate change.
Among the 30 already confirmed Climate Change Summit speakers we can name global leaders in the field, experts and entrepreneurs such as Linda Zeilina, CEO and founder of the International Sustainable Finance Center; Mark Campanale, Founder of the Carbon Tracker Initiative; Oliver Harman, Cities Economist at Oxford University; Hacina Py, Chief Sustainability Officer at Société Générale; Nicolas Brien, President of the European Startup Network; Giedrimas Jeglinskas, Assistant Secretary-General for Executive Management at NATO; Tania Santivanez, Regional Officer at FAO; Ștefania Racolta-Cruceru, Associate Director, Head of EU Green Finance at the EBRD and many others.
“We initiated the Climate Change Summit because we are eager to see Romania finding development solutions that take into account our impact on climate,” said François Bloch, BRD Groupe Société Générale CEO. “Our fundamental role, as a bank, is to provide innovative financial solutions that ensure the transition to a green economy – fair to people, resources and the environment. But we believe that we can do more: we can build and grow a space of ideas and solutions able to help both the economy and the society move faster – together with our partners. Along with the business and academic environment, authorities, NGOs and social innovators, we will provide our expertise and that of Société Générale, which has been financing sustainability projects on all continents and in various industries for over 20 years, helping develop new business models.”
In his turn, Ciprian Stănescu, President and CEO of Social Innovations Solutions added that “even though some climate change is irreversible, we want the Climate Change Summit to contribute to another irreversible change: a new mentality of the future makers and a community of leaders who build together sustainable solutions for the future.”
“Digital and technological transformations, new circular and sustainable business models, a new generation of entrepreneurs for whom social impact is the new norm and the ambitions of large companies and of Europe as a whole to build a green economy give us hope for the future,” he continued. “Starting with October 2022, we bring to Bucharest inspiration from all over the world for a conversation truly relevant to our future.”
During the event, the SIS team will launch the first edition of the Climate & Sustainability Business Index, a study on the perceptions and ambitions of the business environment about the impact of climate change in Romania. Also, on 21–22 September, in the framework of the Climate Change Summit platform, over 100 key actors, central and local authorities, business and civil society leaders, will participate in 8 foresight sessions on the impact of climate change in 2030’s Romania.