The world’s democracies have rallied around democratic Ukraine in the face of Russian President Putin’s unprovoked invasion, helping the courageous people and leaders of Ukraine who are fiercely defending their freedom in ways not seen in decades.
If we take a step back, we see that the strategies they employ reflect the ESG framework – for environment, social and governance – that investors and business leaders have used to grow the 21st economy based on the values of the century.
· E-Environment: Democratic leaders around the world, including the United States, United Kingdom, European Union, NATO, Canada, Japan and Australia, are defending Ukraine’s rights to freedom, to democracy and self-determination – their place.
At the same time, the European countries most economically threatened due to their dependence on Russian oil and gas markets are accelerating their transition to clean energy due to Putin’s aggression and violence. Russia currently supplies 40% of Europe’s energy, but not for long. European leaders would announce next week a comprehensive strategic plan towards clean fuels and a 40% reduction in their use of Russian oil and gas.
Many of these strategies were recommended by top leaders in the 1990s, and some were announced at the UN climate conference known as COP26 in Glasgow last November, but the new plan is more complete and will be implemented exponentially faster, sources say. The invasion of Ukraine quickly shifted leaders who were always on the side of gas infrastructure to the side of cleaner fuels and greater energy independence.
“Europe should be independent of its gas imports and it has the opportunity to be,” said Sandrine Dixson, co-president of the Club of Rome and ambassador of the Commission for the energy transition and one of the co-authors of a 1990s directive on clean fuels. me. “We must immediately examine where we can optimize our energy system. Where can we guarantee efficiencies? How can we start looking at supportive policies…ensuring that they protect those citizens who will be most at risk? »
· S-Social: The way the people of Ukraine bravely step into the breach to protect their country, especially Ukrainian President Zelenskyy, inspires people and other democracies around the world to help out and speak out. Thousands of people around the world are taking to the streets to protest Putin’s violent attack on Ukraine – even Iranians in Tehran, a Russian ally and in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia, putting their own lives at risk. grave danger and risk of arrest (more than 3,000 have been arrested in Russia up to their publication).
World leaders are ensuring that people have the tools to fight for their land and freedoms, and to protect themselves as much as possible, unless they send troops – sending money, arms, equipment, tanks, ammunition and air power.
Neighboring countries like Poland have opened their borders to help the thousands of Ukrainian refugees, mostly women and children, crossing the borders after a dangerous and arduous journey, even to Ukrainians without legal papers. Border crossings have beefed up their staffing to process as many as possible as quickly as possible.
Volunteers at border posts provide hot meals to refugees, and chef José Andrés, who has stepped in to feed millions during natural disasters around the world, brings his global central kitchen to the Polish border to feed fleeing refugees. Putin’s horror. Countries, organizations and individuals around the world are supporting humanitarian efforts. Even autocratic China seems to stand apart and not with Putin.
Corporate stakeholders are also engaging, reorienting supply chains to avoid Russian soil, resources, financial systems and Putin, his cronies or his economy. BP announced today that it is selling its nearly 20% stake in Rosneft, the Russian state oil company which CNBC said accounts for around a third of BP’s oil and gas production, and immediately resigned from its board. administration. Countries refuse to allow Russian airlines to enter any of their airspace and airlines refuse to fly to or through Russian airspace.
· G-Governance: Accountability is at the heart of the global response to Putin’s selfish and unprovoked violent attack on Ukraine. The sheer power of NATO countries remaining united against Putin and Russia surprises Putin and blocks his options. Sanctions announced by the US, EUUK, Japan and Australia bring the Russian economy to its knees, cut them off from the global financial system (e.g. the SWIFT system which processes transactions worldwide), cut their access to world markets and freeze the personal assets of Putin and his cronies.
“This will ensure that these banks are disconnected from the international financial system and will harm their ability to operate globally. SWIFT is the world’s dominant global interbank payment system and cutting off banks will prevent them from carrying out most of their financial transactions globally and will effectively block Russian exports and imports,” the President of the European Commission announced. Ursula von der Leyen. “Second, we will prevent Putin from using his war chest. We will cripple the assets of the Central Bank of Russia. This will freeze its transactions and prevent the Central Bank from liquidating its assets. “use their financial assets in our markets. All these measures will significantly harm Putin’s ability to finance his war and they will have an erosive and severe impact on his economy.”
The world’s democracies – and the peoples of many non-democracies – stand firmly with Ukraine, President Zelensky and his brave people against Putin, whom Maureen Dowd of The New York Times has described as “another little man.” sure of himself solves his problems in a horrible way.”
Putin expected to conquer the world with his actions. Instead, he has united the world against him with a comprehensive strategy that will reduce his power and his bank account, while reducing the world’s dependence on fossil fuels and fostering historic collaboration between the peoples, economies and governments of the world. world.
Full disclosure: The author’s maternal grandparents were born in Ukraine and escaped the Russian pogroms, coming to the United States as children via Ellis Island.
Listen to Joan’s interview with Sandrine Dixson, Co-President of the Club of Rome and Ambassador to the Energy Transitions Commission, at COP26 here.