Fighting the Same Fight: EDF Climate Corps Crosses Paths with C40, BBC, Others

By Katie Ware and Andrew Willens

Heat waves. Droughts. A disappointing climate summit. This summer’s headlines have been less than encouraging for the fight against global warming.

Nonetheless, the EDF Climate Corps team sees reason for optimism. Rio+20 did not produce the binding international climate commitments many had hoped for, but it did demonstrate "big power shifts around the world."

In a recent New York Times article, John M. Brohner touted “the growing capacity of grass-roots organizations and corporations to mold effective environmental action without the blessing of governments." That’s exactly what we're working on through EDF Climate Corps. This summer we placed 98 specially trained graduate students in companies, cities and universities across the nation to build the business case for energy efficiency.

“With federal climate policy at a standstill, the need to cut carbon emissions through energy efficiency has never been greater," said Jim Marston, Vice President of EDF’s Energy Program. "Energy efficiency is doable right now, it’s cost-effective, and it’s too big a part of the climate solution to be ignored.”

About 1 in 5 organizations participating in EDF Climate Corps this summer are already committed to other climate change initiatives such as C40 and the Better Buildings Challenge. Here are some of the "grass roots" movements we’re crossing paths with this summer.

Corporate Eco-Forum

Corporate Eco-Forum (CEF) actually announced its newest sustainability initiatives at Rio+20. This invitation-only membership organization asks large companies to demonstrate commitment to environmental sustainability as a business strategy and meets regularly to exchange best practices. Its members represent 18 industries and have combined revenues exceeding $3 trillion. Our 2012 fellows working with CEF member organizations include:

C40

C40 is a global collection of 58 megacities – Hong Kong, Berlin, Sao Paulo and Johannesburg, to name a few – representing 18 percent of international gross domestic product and one in twelve people worldwide. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg currently serves as chairman of C40, which merged with the Clinton Climate Initiative in April 2011. Our 2012 fellows at C40 cities include:

DOE Better Buildings Challenge

The Better Buildings Challenge (BBC) is a program of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that supports energy efficiency in commercial and industrial buildings. It provides members with technical assistance for energy efficiency projects, as well as a forum to troubleshoot efficiency problems with other members. BBC is a strategy of the Better Buildings Initiative. Our 2012 fellows working with BBC include:

Regional Initiatives A number of our fellows are also involved with sustainability organizations specific to a particular city: