Australia's corporate response to the physical impacts of climate change

10 April, 2014 - 12:00 to 13:00
The Global Change Institute Building Level 2, Room 275 Building 20 (adjacent to the Steele Building) University of Queensland

Overview of Event:

Given the rising levels of greenhouse gas emissions as well as the considerable inertia in achieving stringent mitigation responses, adaptation will be required to address impacts resulting from climate change. Even if stringent cuts of greenhouse gas emissions were undertaken immediately, some levels of adaptation would be necessary to address those impacts from climate change that we are already committed to based on past and present emissions.

Research increasingly suggests that many manifestations of climate change will be localised and will require coordinated, planned and context-specific actions across the corporate sector, local government and communities. The Private Sector Initiative, launched by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2011, promises that “many opportunities are unfolding for private companies to implement actions towards reducing risks to their business operations, as well as investing in adaptation action in vulnerable regions in a sustainable and profitable manner”.

However, as adaptation strategies are still in their infancy, much remains to be learned about adaptation success. Companies face significant difficulties in assessing climate-related risks and impacts, and climate change is often only one of many issues on the corporate agenda. What are the costs and benefits of adaptation, and how can they be measured? What constitutes adaptation success, and how can companies build resilience against the impacts of climate change? This talk focuses on these and related questions, and presents our findings from one the most comprehensive adaptation study among Australia’s top-500 ASX-listed companies. 

Dr Martina Linnenluecke

Dr Martina Linnenluecke is a Senior Lecturer in Sustainability at UQ Business School and the Program Director of the School’s Bachelor of Business Management Program. Her expertise is in the firm and industry adaptation and resilience field. Her research explores the strategic adaptation and resilience of business organisations and industries to climate change and the expected increase in the number and severity of weather extremes.