The goal of We Mean Business Coalition is clear, consistent and science-based: to halve emissions by 2030 and transition to a net zero economy by 2050.
To deliver this goal, the Coalition deploys a range of strategic approaches to catalyze business and policy action. We play a vital role within our ecosystem in convening partners, incubating ideas, co-designing projects and aligning efforts for maximum impact.
Through our grants programme, we mobilize philanthropic funding to invest in portfolios of initiatives that have the potential to realize a net zero economy at speed and scale.
Please be aware that we review grant submissions by invitation only.
In Spring 2022, the We Mean Business Coalition board adopted a new strategy, ‘All in for 2030’, that will direct the work of the Coalition for the remainder of this crucial decade for climate action.
This strategic direction and the principles of impact, innovation and collaboration guide our grants programme. We are proud to support the following projects:
In 2021, the Hong Kong Government declared it would become carbon neutral by 2050. To ensure businesses play their role in the net zero transition, BEC is restructuring its Low Carbon Charter with an overarching objective to mobilize companies and organizations to set and achieve net zero targets and to collectively contribute towards Hong Kong’s 2050 carbon neutrality goal. Key outcomes of the newly named Net-Zero Carbon Charter (NZCC) include: an increased number of Hong Kong businesses setting credible and science-aligned targets; annual greenhouse gas emissions reductions by signatories; policy advocacy engagement through regular meetings with the Hong Kong SAR Government; and accelerated business climate action through capacity building workshops.
Halving emissions by 2030 requires a carefully managed transition that maximizes the social and economic opportunities of climate action while mitigating adverse effects on impacted groups. To help achieve a just and inclusive transition, BSR and The B Team co-lead a project and ‘Business and Just Transition Task Force’ in collaboration with the We Mean Business Coalition. This aims to ensure that businesses invest in a just and inclusive net zero economy and engage key stakeholders – including workers, communities in which they operate and governments – to create a conducive enabling environment for a just transition.
Just 0.3% of new medium- and heavy-duty vehicles (MHDVs) were zero emissions (ZE) in 2021. The sector is ripe for transformation, but it faces significant barriers to launch, including vehicle supply availability, infrastructure and finance – even in countries with early deployment and sound commitments. To overcome these barriers, CALSTART is setting up a network of global implementation hubs. These are local action-driven partnerships through which organizations can receive tailored support and collaborate to increase ZE-MHDV adoption. The hubs aim to accelerate ZE-MHDV deployment and amplify business voices to move countries forward and catalyze stronger policy ambition.
Transport is the largest and fastest growing source of carbon emissions in the US in recent years. Despite substantial investment in production, the shift towards electric vehicles (EVs) is not happening fast enough in the US, as significant market, technology and regulatory barriers remain. Ceres accelerates the US transition to electric road transport across light-, medium- and heavy-duty vehicle classes to ensure greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions can be halved by 2030 on a global scale.
Ceres has a long track record of mobilizing businesses and investors to educate and engage policymakers and the public on the business and economic case for ambitious climate policy action. This project aims to mobilize growing numbers of private sector voices (i.e., SBTi companies, SME Climate Hub companies, and investors) to deliver the business case for the US economy to decarbonize, and support the halving of global GHG emissions by 2030.
A lack of financing mechanisms is one of the biggest barriers to clean energy procurement for most enterprises – many of which are supply chain partners. CEBA’s Credit Support to Scale Clean Energy Procurement project is supporting the expansion of the clean energy transition by developing and piloting economic credit products for non-investment grade buyers acting in the US.
CEBI’s Project Lightning leverages the efforts of several multinational corporations with overlapping supply chains that are seeking to reduce their Scope 3 emissions. It develops materials and in-person training programs for supply chain companies situated in Jiangsu province, China. Removing knowledge barriers to business investment in clean energy demonstrates the business value of clean energy, enables procurement, creates clean energy champions in markets where none/few exist and builds local advocates for clean energy proliferation.
This Climate Group project positions the We Mean Business Coalition and its partners as the global hub for business demand signal initiatives. Creating a comprehensive approach by aligning closely with public sector demand campaigns and early market signals initiatives such as the First Movers Coalition, this work will progress along three tracks. It aims to grow the community of demand-side voices in priority end-use sectors across the value chains of renewables, steel, concrete and EV sectors, and leverage collective demand to accelerate decarbonization across those sectors. The project aims to shape effective policy-making through high quality business engagement in key geographies and sectors that will create ripple effects across the wider economy, and to use the power of strategic communications to underpin key activities and milestones.
As a leading voice of the Global South, expectations are high for India’s G20 Presidency to deliver meaningful progress on climate and energy,building on recent policy positions and announcements in domestic and international arenas. The overall objective of this project is to leverage the Indian G20 Presidency to increase global action on net zero and to strengthen Climate Group and We Mean Business Coalition’s international policy engagement strategy.
CLG Europe will support the EU to maintain a strong level of climate ambition, establishing policy frameworks and measures that will enable it to achieve ambitious objectives, and developing solutions to overcome energy security challenges in a way that is consistent with increased climate action. To achieve these policy objectives, CLG will mobilize businesses from the CLG and We Mean Business Coalition networks to engage in advocacy during important political milestones and with key decision makers.
Through its Fit for 55 package, the EU has introduced climate legislation focused on driving circular economy outcomes. The package introduced the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation in July 2022, a major policy that can regulate how products are designed and used to minimize carbon emissions. Debate about this regulation is ongoing within the EU and the next couple of years present a unique opportunity to influence how this policy is implemented as well as other critical policy debates on sustainability and circularity. CLG Europe created the Taskforce for climate neutral and circular materials and products in 2021 to raise the business voice in support of progressive sustainability policies in the EU. The Taskforce provides a forum for its corporate members to exchange views and innovations, build thought leadership pieces and lead campaigns at key policy moments. This project aims to expand the work and impact of the Taskforce through targeted research, convenings and communications work to build business momentum and support in favor of specific pieces of legislation on industrial policy and circularity.
Heavy-duty freight trucks are disproportionate contributors to pollution – in Latin America the freight sector represents nearly 30% of overall GHG emissions. With urban freight expected to almost double by 2050 in Latin American cities, accelerating uptake of zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) fleets will be critical. Through the ZEBRA+ initiative, ICCT works with champion fleets in Colombia and Mexico to raise awareness of the benefits of ZEVs and generate a documented case of success for a specific region and segment. It leverages these pilot demonstrations and learnings to motivate and aid other fleets, and to engage with policymakers to enact effective policies that reduce barriers and send the appropriate market signals needed to accelerated uptake.
As the world’s fifth largest emitter and a member of G7 and G20, Japan has a vital role to play in keeping 1.5°C in reach and halving global emissions by 2030. Its 2023 G7 presidency has the potential to impact the commitment and direction of climate action domestically and internationally for the coming years. This IGES project aims to stimulate the introduction of 1.5°C-compatible climate and energy policies in Japan and other major economies of the G7 and G20. It aims to increase the leverage the We Mean Business Coalition has at key international events by improving insights into climate and energy policymaking in Japan and to support companies to implement Responsible Policy Engagement towards Coalition international policy priorities.
Over the last three years, NBI successfully delivered the Just Transition Pathways Project. This provided a theoretical and stakeholder platform for the ambitious National Determined Contribution (NDC) agreed by the Republic of South Africa’s government at COP26, and the Just Energy Transition Partnership funding agreed to deliver it. Over the next grant period NBI will deliver further key initiatives to drive this decarbonization policy ambition through the South African economy.
The ResponsibleSteel Standard and certification program sets a clear direction of travel for the steel industry as whole, helping the industry to decarbonize crude steel production. ResponsibleSteel revised its Standard in September 2022 after leading an intensive, multi-stakeholder consultation process – and this presents an opportune moment for the organization to drive a targeted communications and advocacy campaign to increase visibility. Through this project, ResponsibleSteel will deliver its communications strategy globally over two years to scale membership and adoption of its standard and certification among steel producers, helping accelerate decarbonization across the steel industry. Using communications as an advocacy tool, ResponsibleSteel also aims to influence government policies – especially those related to public procurement – to drive demand for low carbon steel.
Decarbonizing industrial sectors such as steel and concrete requires massive public policy support. Green public procurement accounts for 30% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in many developing countries and is a policy tool that is gaining widespread attention to help drive demand as well as trigger supply of low carbon steel and concrete. As the second largest producer and consumer of steel and concrete, and as a country that has positioned itself as a climate leader, the time is ripe for India to unlock green public procurement as a policy tool to stimulate the market for low carbon steel and concrete and hasten the pace of industrial decarbonization. India is a founding member of the Industrial Deep Decarbonization Initiative, which aims to drive green public procurement across all member countries, and the country has signalled intent towards making an ambitious public procurement commitment. Through research, data and insights and a bespoke framework, RMI aims to support the Indian government to make this commitment, and towards implementation of related policies.
The Collaboration Catalyzer is the heart of SFC’s Sustainable Freight Buyers Alliance. It provides a global hub for concrete, collaborative and action-oriented projects that track GHG emissions reductions. It brings together global shippers, forwarders and carriers, NGOs, and governments in order to connect the supply and demand side of zero emission freight in an efficient way for scalable impact. This enables the freight sector to act on its ambition and deliver on emission reductions.
Recent global challenges have exposed an urgent need for more effective evidence-based policymaking which identifies systemic barriers, emerging issues, and transformational solutions. The We Mean Business Coalition can play an essential role in this through its work to activate business voice and leadership, helping to shape a more ambitious global policy agenda and drive the transformational solutions needed. Through this project, The B Team will aim to shine a light on emerging and existing policy solutions with transformational potential and drive greater collaboration among Coalition partners into advocacy using new perspectives and approaches to intractable challenges. It will engage in horizon scanning to identify systemic barriers and opportunities for collective impact, to be integrated into the Coalition’s International Policy Strategy, and used for advocacy efforts at key moments and in key geographies.
If governments work closely with companies to develop national and sectoral decarbonization pathways and policies, business will have the necessary policy support and incentives to invest more ambitiously to achieve their own objectives that support the net zero transition. This project plans to support companies and the organizations that work with them by providing the policy messages and tools to work with governments at the international, regional, and national levels, to develop the right policies that will help business invest in the net zero transition and remove policy barriers that slow down ambition and action. WBCSD will work with Coalition partners to identify and prioritize the key moments and processes that can deliver policy impact, based on ongoing geopolitics and developments in the international climate sphere, developing policy messaging, campaigns and tools for businesses, and amplifying the voices of forward-looking companies who advocate for these policy interventions.
Net Zero Carbon Buildings (NZCB) account for less than 1% of the global building stock, and this needs to exponentially increase to achieve the overarching goal of 50% emissions reduction (2020 baseline) for the built environment by 2030. Despite proven benefits of NZCBs, the built environment suffers from massive data challenges on whole life carbon emissions across the building lifecycle, a fragmented value chain and limited coordination between public and private stakeholders, leading to lack of coherence between policy development and implementation. This is a flagship project that will aim to address these challenges in India and Mexico while raising ambition globally through specific interventions. The project brings together an alliance of leading NGOs with deep expertise – WGBC, WRI and WBCSD. Through radical collaboration among the partners involved, as well as between key stakeholders targeted, the project aims to deliver local solutions, pilot projects and policies, and aligned global narratives and insights, to help unlock some of the most critical challenges in the built environment.
The Coalition is seeking funding partners who understand the scale and time-limited nature of the challenge we face. By directing investment through our collaboration platform, funding partners can enable a whole community of climate pioneers to deliver systems-level action.
We Mean Business Coalition’s track record in delivering transformational impact in the corporate climate community is well-established. The Coalition has facilitated and supported major initiatives that are driving impact, collaboration and innovation towards a net zero future, including:
As a direct result of these initiatives, the number of companies globally setting a science-based target to cut their emissions has grown from a few companies – when the Coalition was founded in 2014 – to more than 10,000 by the end of 2022.
Demand-side initiatives backed by the Coalition – including the case studies below – have helped create and shape markets for sustainable products and industries around the world.