Apple, Unilever and IKEA pushing for ambitious climate policy

New research from UK think tank InfluenceMap has found that Apple, Unilever and IKEA are the top three most influential companies globally that are pushing for ambitious climate policy that’s aligned with the Paris Agreement.

The research identifies the 50 companies which have the most influence in shaping climate and energy policy around the world, both positively and negatively. Some of these companies are in opposition to progressive climate policy, while others are championing ambitious national-level policy to support decarbonization plans.

Out of the group of 50, just 15 companies were identified as pushing for an ambitious climate policy agenda, favouring renewable power and electric vehicles. In addition to the top three, positive influencers on the list include renowned consumer brands such as Nike and Nestle, pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline, electric automaker Tesla and several utility companies such as EDP.

It also includes signatories to the RE100 initiative, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, with commitments to buying 100% renewable power. And companies with approved science-based emissions reduction targets. The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) is a collaboration between CDP, World Resources Institute, the World Wide Fund for Nature and the United Nations Global Compact.

However, 35 of the 50 most influential companies identified by InfluenceMap are actively lobbying against progressive climate policy. They include companies in the fossil fuel value chain, heavy energy users and electric utilities with large amounts of coal generating capacity.

In 2015, InfluenceMap launched their first effort to quantitatively score companies based on their influence over climate policy. The scope of this influencing was based on the UN-backed Guide to Responsible Corporate Engagement with Climate Policy.

The assessment methodology used by InfluenceMap was devised to achieve an objective and comparable score based on numerous data points and thus show a pattern of behaviour for each company and trade association covered. The method also factors in the overall economic clout of the company globally and assesses the 250 largest industrial companies in the world, from which the 50 most influential, with both positive and negative attitudes towards climate policy were revealed.

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