CBS Corporation

At a Glance

Industry

Arts, Media and Entertainment

Project Types

Financial Evaluation and Planning, Goals/Targets, Sustainability and Energy Management Strategy

Year

2021

Location

New York, NY

Summary

Emma Friedl assessed ViacomCBS’s current and future risks from climate change and developed a strategic framework for implementing an internal carbon pricing program to support decarbonization efforts.

Goals

ViacomCBS recognizes the growing urgency of the climate crisis and is committed to mitigating its impacts with the ambition of working towards net zero emissions. To build the business case and develop creative financing solutions, ViacomCBS enlisted Emma Friedl to understand the financial implications of mitigating and adapting to climate change and to develop a plan for how the company might adopt an internal carbon price.

Solutions

After reviewing internal and external sustainability frameworks, Friedl approached the problem in three phases to align her work with best practices:

  • Physical Risk Assessment: She first conducted a physical risk assessment with the ESG analytics firm Trucost to identify major climate risks for 100 ViacomCBS sites. This assessment will allow ViacomCBS to understand and prepare for risks throughout their complex value chain.
  • Transition Risks and Opportunities Assessment: Next, she conducted internal interviews and market research to help ViacomCBS understand how the transition to a low carbon economy could produce regulatory and reputational risks as well as new opportunities, like the potential to reduce costs of build resiliency.
  • Internal Carbon Pricing Strategy: Having built the business case for addressing climate change impacts, Friedl created a tailored framework and provided recommendations for ViacomCBS to develop an internal carbon pricing program to support their carbon reduction goals.

Potential Impact

Friedl’s work provided ViacomCBS with a clear understanding of how climate change could impact the business and paved the way for more robust climate-related financial analyses. Her internal carbon pricing framework equipped ViacomCBS with a vital tool in prioritizing low-carbon investments and engaging ViacomCBS’s entire value chain, and can ultimately help the organization reduce carbon emissions by hundreds of thousands to millions of tons.


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