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Carbon War Room

Page history last edited by Malcolm 10 years, 4 months ago

 

April 21, 2010, 4:07 PM EDT

 

By Jim Efstathiou Jr.

 

April 21 (Bloomberg) -- Solutions to global warming will create more wealth than any other business in the next decade, said Richard Branson, the billionaire founder of Virgin Group Ltd.

 

Branson, at a conference in Washington today, formally unveiled his Carbon War Room, a group of entrepreneurs seeking market-driven solutions to climate change. Members include Craig Cogut, founder and co-managing Partner of Pegasus Capital Advisors and retired U.S. Army general Wesley Clark.

 

"Copenhagen showed us that this challenge is one that cannot and should not be left to governments alone," Branson said of failed United Nations climate treaty talks in December. "Politicians, they're only there for four years. The Carbon War Room hopefully will be around for the next 50 years."

 

The group's initial target is emissions from shipping, the world's sixth-largest source of warming gases, according to former Costa Rica President José María Figueres, a member of the Carbon War Room's executive board. The group is advocating the development of an emissions index for vessels that ports and brokers could use to rate environmental performance.

 

"This would be really useful if the port of Los Angeles could incentivize the cleanest ships," said Peter Boyd, Carbon War Room director of operations. "We're hoping to have widespread knowledge of vessel emissions within two years."

 

The group also plans to take on transportation, buildings, land use and other activities that increase emissions blamed for global warming. Branson and the nine other founders put up an undisclosed amount of money to fund the group's operations.

 

"The end result is quite likely that the shipping industry will save themselves a lot of money," Branson said. "Today, 50 percent of all greenhouse-gas emissions can be offset cost effectively with existing technology."

 

--Editors: Romaine Bostick, Steve Geimann.

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