In 2000, the United Nations launched the UN Global Compact as a platform to challenge the private sector to change the way we do business, and to advance corporate sustainability. It called on businesses everywhere to deliver long-term value in financial, social, environmental and ethical terms.
As we celebrate 15 years of the Global Compact, I am proud of our long journey together. Novozymes became a signatory to the Global Compact and its Ten Principles in 2001. It was an easy decision for us, as sustainability is deeply entrenched in our genes. For Novozymes, sustainability is about taking the long view, while building on one of the fastest-moving technology bases in the world. We believe that the license for long-term action must be earned with short-term performance.
Over time, Novozymes became one of the pioneering companies to join the Global Compact LEAD forum. We actively support and engage with various UN thematic working groups and Global Compact regional networks in Brazil, China, India, North America and the Nordic region.
Sustainable development for all
At the UN General Assembly in New York in September 2015, Novozymes joined the rest of the world in welcoming the new UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These 17 goals reflect the fundamental challenges, such as poverty and climate change, that the world must overcome to grow sustainably and equitably. Over the next 15 years, countries are expected to use these goals to frame policies, allocate financing and drive changes that will help build a fairer and more sustainable world – for all.
Novozymes was among the first to align with the SDGs. Our groundbreaking biotechnological solutions can provide answers to a number of global development challenges. For Novozymes, the goals provide a framework to guide decisions, manage risks and unlock future business opportunities.
By leveraging our decade-long experience with life cycle assessments, we are pioneering new methodologies to conduct SDG impact assessments. We will use these methodologies to systematically evaluate our pipeline of technology, business model innovations and partnership opportunities in terms of their potential contribution to the SDGs. Going forward we will use this information to prioritize our pipeline for maximum possible impact.
Rallying for climate change action
2015 was also a pivotal year for the global movement on climate change. I congratulate the world leaders who have shown the courage to reach a historic agreement at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris. It sends a clear signal to businesses, investors and markets that the world must move toward a low-carbon future.
Novozymes demonstrated strong leadership in the run-up to COP21. We called for an agreement to limit global temperature rise and move toward a level playing field on energy costs by adopting stable carbon-pricing mechanisms. At the UN General Assembly, we represented the private sector and reiterated our position that carbon emissions need to carry a cost that alters behaviors and incentivizes investment in solutions.
Looking ahead, we will support the implementation of the agreement and national action plans. We will continue to support the Lima-Paris Action Agenda by building partnerships to scale up the development and diffusion of low-carbon and energy-efficient solutions, especially for low-carbon fuels and climate-smart agriculture.
Partnering for impact
Novozymes’ corporate purpose is “Together we find biological answers for better lives in a growing world.” To help tackle the world’s challenges, we need to collaborate with governments, civil society and other businesses. This is the foundation of our business strategy: Partnering for Impact.
The 2030 development agenda will put the world on a path toward a more sustainable, viable, low-carbon future. The SDGs will provide a platform for new partnership opportunities, and we look forward to another successful 15 years of collaboration with the UN Global Compact.
|Peder Holk Nielsen|
|President & CEO|