Be Lean, Be Future Proof

The 2009 UN Climate Change Conference COP15 will be remembered as an important chapter in the history of global environmental negotiations. The main goal of the conference was to reach an agreement on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, including with the United States and major emerging countries (China, India, Brazil), to follow up on the 2012 commitments that were made in the framework of the Kyoto Protocol and which concerned developed countries only.

Despite some important progress – with respect to financing, and mobilizing towns and cities to play a more important role in the fight – the Copenhagen Summit has ushered in a period of uncertainty on the world’s markets. And yet for economic decision-makers, the part-failure in December 2009 should not hide the fact that the decarbonation of the economy remains a major trend for the upcoming years.

Decarbonating your activities is a long-term undertaking that requires a long term vision. The period of time ranges from a few weeks, to implement quick-wins, to 10 years for an industrial or real-estate strategy. Often, these kinds of timescales do not align with priorities of senior executives who require shorter deadlines for transformation, or for shareholders who are looking for quick returns. In some cases, we have seen initiatives approved, financed and completed that are not part of a broader vision, and have only been implemented for a short term gain leading to inefficiencies.

Capgemini has been helping companies with the theme of decarbonation since 2005 – the year when the European carbon quota system was ramped up, and when the Kyoto Protocol entered into force after being ratified by Russia – in terms of both strategic questioning and transformation. As a result, Capgemini understands the challenges that decarbonating a business can pose, and is well positioned to help companies that want to avoid falling behind.