Biogen CEO, Michel Vounatsos on going beyond carbon neutral to achieve zero emissions by 2040The We Mean Business coalition
Michel Vounatsos, CEO of Biogen calls for climate solutions that also promote human health for an ‘inclusive and sustainable future.’
Biogen is helping to accelerate the Race to Zero by investing $250m to end fossil fuel use across its operations by 2040.
“The pandemic has more people thinking about the way human health depends on a healthy climate. A recent study from Harvard University found that a small increase in exposure to air pollution may lead to more deaths from Covid-19. There is also mounting evidence that links air pollution to a number of health conditions such as respiratory and cardiovascular disease. Sadly, the people who are hurt the most, are the most vulnerable among us. Yet, over the past several months, people around the world have marvelled that clear skies are possible in a surprisingly short time. Now, the urgent question is, how we can act on these hard won lessons during society’s great reset. If fossil fuel emissions were eliminated, the average life expectancy may increase by more than one year and could prevent nearly nine million deaths annually.
“For the pharma industry the paradox is that we can’t lead in health without reducing our operational impact on the planet. We must reexamine the way we do business, the way we consume energy and the way we live. For BioGen this means going beyond carbon neutral, to achieve zero fossil fuel emissions by 2040. We are proud to launch, ‘Healthy Climate, healthy lives’, a 20-year action plan with a goal to eliminate fossil fuel emissions by 2040 and advance the science around how fossil fuels impact human health. As we move forward, I believe we need to adopt climate solutions that also promote human health. Now is the time to advance a shared vision of a more inclusive and sustainable future. One where science meets humanity.”