Net zero by 2050: Switzerland wants to achieve a balanced climate balance in 30 years. By 2030 there should be 50 percent fewer greenhouse gases. This is what the new CO2 law, which will come to the polls in June, wants.
The aim is to reduce emissions in all sectors – from industry to agriculture to transport. Resistance from the economy was therefore to be expected. But only the oil and auto industries are publicly defending themselves against the law. Large associations such as Economiesuisse, the Swiss Bankers Association and the Swiss Master Builders Association, however, are in favor. And more and more companies are doing the same.
Now very big names are coming out too. SonntagsBlick knows: Novartis, Swiss Re, Ikea, Siemens, Helvetia, Mobiliar, BASF, PwC and the Ammann Group also say yes to the climate proposal. And that although for some of them it would be much more convenient without this law. “It affects us particularly in the areas of transport, buildings and business travel,” says Jessica Andere (50), head of Ikea Switzerland. Nevertheless, she is in favor: “
The y envisage that Ikea will be climate positive by 2030. ” By then, the company wants to remove more CO2 from the atmosphere than it emits.
Vegetarianism and Efficiency
How does the furniture dealer want to do that? “By drastically reducing our emissions,” says others. “We are increasing our efficiency and offering more plant-based foods. But we also remove CO2 from the atmosphere and store it in the soil and in products. ” And finally, Ikea wants to offer customers solar systems and heat pumps. That corresponds to a need, says others. “87 percent of our customers are ready to do something about climate change.”
Pharmaceutical giant Novartis is also working on its own carbon footprint. “We have set ourselves the goal of being climate-neutral by 2030,” says Chairman of the Board of Directors Jörg Reinhardt (64). He is convinced: “
The law is a compromise that companies of all sizes should be able to implement.”
But: Can everyone also afford it? “Climate neutrality is not available for free,” says Reinhardt. “But if we don’t act, the long-term costs are far higher.” Investments in the environmental sector would bring great benefits in the long term. “This means that Switzerland can be a world leader in the development of new technologies in this area.”
Reinsurer Swiss Re is feeling climate change firsthand. Heavy rain, cyclones, periods of drought, forest fires: environmental disasters are expensive. So it is only logical that the group is one of the Swiss frontrunners when it comes to sustainability. Swiss Re also supports the CO2 Act.
Is it all just greenwashing?
“As a risk taker and also as a major institutional investor, we can help push the transition to a low-carbon economy,” says CEO Christian Mumenthaler (51). “We want a strong, concrete and visible commitment of international companies across all industrial sectors on the way to net zero.”
Is that greenwashing? Do these companies only support the CO2 Act for image reasons? “No,” says Stefan Batzli (56), co-managing director of AEE Suisse, the umbrella organization for renewable energies and energy efficiency. “A company that is actively committed to political framework conditions is concerned with the matter.” This involvement of business on a controversial political issue is unique. “It shows that companies are actually concerned.”
ETH climatologist Reto Knutti (47) also says that there is a rapid rethinking in business. “We cannot avoid a net-zero goal.” That is why innovative companies that are oriented towards the future would be at the forefront. “
The rest will deal with shit storms, expensive fossil fuels and maybe even lawsuits.”