Landmark climate change conference releases peek into commitments, events and more to watch for during action-packed Summit

Near final program with speaker names also launched today


SAN FRANCISCO (Sept. 7, 2018)—With just five days to go until the Global Climate Action Summit on Sept. 12–14, the Summit’s communications team today released an early look at some of the most noteworthy events and announcements to watch for, many of which will be part of the official schedule and program that was also released today.

Click here to view the Summit Program.

Additionally, there are many newsworthy pre-Summit events, including the following:

Sunday, Sept. 9

  • What are the potential economic, health and emissions reduction benefits that could be achieved from bold climate action in cities? The Climate Opportunity Research Report issued by C40 will explain that and more. Contact

Monday, Sept. 10

  • Full-day: A symposium at the Mondavi Center, UC-Davis, will discuss the best ways to manage agricultural lands to improve resilience, food security and health. For more information, email Don Drysdale (

Tuesday, Sept. 11

  • 3–4:30 p.m.: America’s Pledge will host an embargoed press briefing around its Phase II Report, “Fulfilling America’s Pledge: How States, Cities, and Businesses Are Leading the United States to a Low-Carbon Future.” America’s Pledge Vice Chairs Carl Pope and Mary Nichols, as well as report authors Paul Bodnar and Nathan Hultman, will lead the briefing. For more information and to RSVP, contact Carey Hickox at
  • The Climate Group will issue news of a major new energy-intensive company joining EP100. Contact
  • 10.30am-11.30am: The presidents of nine foundations will at the Park 55 Hotel announce a philanthropic push to preserve forests, use land sustainably and bolster the rights of indigenous peoples. Contact: Ellen Wilson, +1 301 466 3205,
  • 8 a.m.–9:30 p.m.: Distinguished panelists from government, academia, business and civil society will address the themes of energy and land use at Land, Energy, and Climate Change: The Low Emissions Solutions Conference at the McLaren Complex. For more information, contact Julie Chao (
  • 10 a.m.–5 p.m.: First day of the Scaling Up Climate Smart Agriculture Event, combining panel discussions and tours related to soil health and climate-smart agricultural practices. For more information, contact Steve Lyle (
  • 1–5:30 p.m.: The 2018 California-Germany Bilateral Conference at the Contemporary Jewish Museum will gather industry experts, think tanks and policy makers from Germany and California to discuss recent developments and deepen the understanding of long-term trends in energy. To learn more, email Albert Lundeen at

Wednesday, Sept. 12

  • 8 a.m.–5:15 p.m.: Forests, Food and Land Day, organized by WWF and taking place at the Herbst Theatre, will highlight steps the world can take to properly conserve its natural resources. For more information, email Scott Edwards (
  • 1–4:30 p.m.: Cities4Climate: The Future Is Us, organized by C40 and taking place at San Francisco City Hall, will highlight specific climate actions that cities across the world are undertaking. For more information, email
  • 2:30–5 p.m.: A panel discussion at the ClimateWorks Foundation will look at how the temperate forests and other lands of Washington, Oregon and California can be essential tools for climate change mitigation, and how they can be managed to best advantage. For details contact Jason Gohlke (
  • Ceres is a sustainability nonprofit working with the most influential investors and companies to build leadership and drive solutions throughout the economy.  Ceres, along with six global partner organizations, will launch the Investor Agenda, which calls on global investors to accelerate and scale up the actions that are critical to tackling climate change and achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement. It is a comprehensive agenda for investors to manage climate risks and capture low-carbon opportunities and a mechanism to report on their progress in four focus areas: Investment, Corporate engagement, Investor Disclosure and Policy Advocacy.
  • 4 p.m.: Grace Cathedral will hold a multifaith service in advance of the Global Climate Action Summit asking faith groups to step up and make commitments on climate change.

The Global Climate Action Summit gets going in earnest on Thursday, Sept. 13, with a two-day program of invitation-only events, report launches and climate commitment announcements aimed at “Taking Ambition to the Next Level.” It will end with a Call to Global Climate Action and the Summit outcomes on Sept. 14, asking national governments to raise their ambition by 2020 and looking forward to the UN secretary-general’s leaders’ Summit happening in New York in September 2019.

Below are a few of the many things to look out for during the Global Climate Action Summit:

  • Expect a significant climate action announcement by a major food and beverage company.
  • A large utility will be making an announcement on a major new investment in energy storage.
  • Several companies are making commitments to roll out more zero-emissions vehicles and charging infrastructure.
  • Media are invited by Gov. Jerry Brown’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) and Elizabeth Gore of Alice to a special tour of emerging environmental businesses selected to exhibit at the Innovation Showcase. This will be from 9:15–10:30 a.m. Sept. 14 at the Summit venue. Media will be joined on the tour by a group of investors who will select one Innovation Showcase Winner to receive a cash prize care of Jackson Family Wines and Alice, mentorship from Signia Venture Partners, and media features. The winner will be announced onstage at the Innovation Showcase following the tour. Please RSVP to Sandra Crawford by Monday, 10. Note that the Innovation Showcase tour is limited to GCAS-accredited media only.
  • Johan Rockstrom, a world-leading climate scientist, and Christiana Figueres, the former head of the UNFCCC Climate Change and Convenor of Mission 2020, will outline the risks the world is facing but also the potential for climate action from sectors across the economy. A suite of new data has been crunched across many sectors of the economy to be presented in newly commissioned animated infographics. The media contact is Owen Gaffney, Stockholm Resilience Centre, +46 (0) 734604833,
  • Find out how many cities have already peaked their greenhouse gas emissions in line with the Paris climate change agreement and how many are adopting new challenges, from zero waste to zero-emissions buildings.
  • Learn how many companies have adopted Science Based Targets—aligning their pollution reduction plans with the Paris Agreement.
  • A major healthcare company will be making an announcement on greening its operations.
  • Discover investor plans to ramp up the percentage of portfolios into the new economy.
  • Learn which companies have incorporated workers’ rights in renewable energy purchasing agreements.
  • Hear a coalition of major tech companies discuss their commitments to decarbonizing the global economy.

And there’s much, much more, including major celebrities like Harrison Ford, and the special representative on climate change affairs of China Xie Zhenhua speaking about his country’s path to the 2020 milestone.

Following the release of the Summit’s finale—the Call to Global Climate Action—media will be asked to fasten their seat belts and prepare for the New American Road Trip, which will carry the outcomes of the Summit to people across the United States and via social media to people around the globe.

Meet the two celebrities who are participating, and wave them off from outside the Moscone Center South on their 10-day journey to cities ranging from Las Vegas to Pittsburg and on to New York and the 10th Climate Week. Contact:

Throughout its program, the Global Climate Action Summit will bring together state and local governments, businesses, and citizens from around the world to showcase climate action taking place, demonstrating how the tide has turned in the race against climate change and inspiring deeper national commitments in support of the Paris Agreement. The Summit’s five headline challenge areas are Healthy Energy Systems, Inclusive Economic Growth, Sustainable Communities, Land and Ocean Stewardship, and Transformative Climate Investments.

Alongside the Summit itself are over 325 exciting affiliate events in San Francisco and beyond. A selection of these affiliate events include:

Other major affiliate events include:

Every day until Sunday, Sept. 23

  • COAL + ICE Exhibition and Climate Festival, organized by Asia Society runs daily at Fort Mason. This exhibition visually narrates the consequences triggered by the continued use of fossil fuels, following the trajectory of climate change from the dirty coal mines deep within the earth, to the vanishing glaciers of the Greater Himalaya. The exhibition culminates in global consequences and an exploration of visionary solutions. Email:

Monday, Sept. 10

Tuesday, Sept. 11

Wednesday, Sept. 12

Thursday, Sept. 13

Thursday, Sept. 13 and Friday Sept. 14

  • Water Pavilion: A Tale of Two Extremes, organized by Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, Water Foundation, & Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. This event takes place 8am-4pm at Autodesk, Market Street on the 13th and 8am-7pm at the Exploratorium, Embarcadero on the 14th. This pavilion will provide a water space for the duration of the Summit. It will be a place for water interested participants to gather. There will be panels, interactive sessions, receptions, and a concluding workshop to focus participants on water-climate commitments they can make for their organization and for themselves. Email:

Friday, Sept. 14

Saturday, Sept. 15

  • California Coastal Cleanup, 9 a.m.–12 p.m., organized by Salesforce at Shorebird Park, Berkeley. This day sees 60,000 volunteers across the state preserve wildlife by picking up thousands of pieces of trash from the coastline—all while connecting with their local community. Email:

There’s much more being planned. To find more details and more events, head to the Summit’s Affiliate Events Calendar.

Those who can’t attend the Summit’s unique programming in person can get involved by viewing the Summit livestream on YouTube and supplemental programming via the “Step Up World” online TV show.

Join the conversation on social media with the hashtags #GCAS2018 and #StepUp2018. For more information on the Summit, click here; become a digital delegate and sign up for the Summit mailing list here; and follow the Summit on Twitter and Facebook. 

The Global Climate Action Summit is grateful for the support of its sponsors. Details of these can be found here.

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