International Congress on Climate Action (CIACC 2024) concludes

International Congress on Climate Action (CIACC 2024) concludes
From left to right: Santos Gracia, President of FUNIBER; Elvira Carles, Director of the Fundación Privada Empresa y Clima; and Rubén Calderón, Rector of UNEATLANTICO.

The International Congress on Climate Action (CIACC 2024), organized by the Ibero-American University Foundation (FUNIBER) and the European University of the Atlantic (UNEATLANTICO), together with the Fundación Empresa y Clima (FEC), closes successfully.

The program was held on July 3, 4 and 5 at UNEATLANTICO. The objective of these days was to deal with 6 sessions with different topics of social interest in the climate field. In addition, different international experts were present and made several presentations.

First session

The Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM)” was the central theme of the first session moderated by Mrs. Núria del Pozo, from the Fundación Empresa & Clima (FEC). This is an instrument for importing goods from outside the European Union (EU), addressing the risk of carbon leakage. This session addressed issues related to carbon pricing and its relationship and impact on the production of intensive goods and industrial production in non-EU countries.

Within this session, the first keynote speech was given by Irene Vergara, technical advisor at the Subdirectorate General for Carbon Markets. This presentation was followed by a round table discussion with the participation of Ms. Ariadna Arola, chief research and development officer at Arola; Mr. Dan Maleski, CBAM leader, advisor on Environmental Markets atRedshaw Advisors Ltd; Mr. Andrei Marcu, executive director of the European Roundtable on Climate Change and Sustainable Transition (ERCST); and Mr. George Riddell, director of Trade Policy and Strategy at EY LLP.

Second session

The second session, entitled “Value Chain Development and Viable Offset Projects” and moderated by Ms. Núria del Pozo, from the Business & Climate Foundation (FEC), focused on how sustainability has become a necessity for all companies that want to ensure their long-term success. The responsibility that this implies and its extension beyond the company and its value chain.

The session began with a keynote speech by Sheila Killian, Professor of Accounting and Finance and Director of PRME, Kemmy Business School. This was followed by a round table discussion with the participation of Mr. Thomas Buch Andersson, CEO and co-founder of Responsability; Ms. Lara Obst, founder of The Climate Choice, a climate intelligence platform for the decarbonization of the supply chain; Ms. Clara Roig, Head of Operational Marketing and Sustainability for Southern Europe at Carburos Metálicos (Air Products); Ms. María Antonia Ruiz, Sustainability Director, Puig S.L.; and Mr. Pedro Ruiz, General Manager, Mare, S.A.

Third session

Mr. José María Segón, Executive Director and Head of Specialties, Aon Spain, moderated the third session entitled “Measuring Climate Impacts and Risks”. Over the years, changes in climate have caused impacts on natural and human systems on all continents and oceans. In many regions, changing precipitation or melting snow and ice are altering hydrological systems, affecting water resources in terms of quantity and quality.

This session featured a keynote address by Mr. Will Bruce, Aon’s Global Head of Climate Risk Consulting. As in the two previous sessions, there was a round table where attendees were able to enjoy an exchange of ideas between Ms. Marta Anglada, head of sustainability at Grupo Ferrer; Mr. Jonathan Bravo, director of Regulatory Affairs at the IFRS Foundation; Mr. Efren Feliu, manager of Adaptation to Climate Change at TECNALIA Research and Innovation; and Mr. Brian McDonald, chairman of the Audit Committee and member of the Board of Directors of Fluidra.

Fourth session

Mr. Jordi Turmo, director of Green Ventures, Farside Ventures, moderated the fourth session under the title “Technological solutions to industrial challenges”. The industrial sector is a highly competitive and challenging environment in which companies must constantly face a series of obstacles to achieve sustainable growth and development. This session explored some of the most common challenges faced by industrial companies, offering effective strategies to overcome them.

Mr. Miquel Rovira, Director of Sustainability at Eurecat – Technology Center of Catalonia, gave the keynote address. Mr. Mike Cuingnet, CEO and co-founder of Tennders; Mr. Paco Bree, Executive Director of Inndux; Mr. David Llamas, Director of Sustainability, ESG for Spain and Portugal, and HSE manager at WSP Central Europe; Ms. Anna Martín, EO and co-founder of ATOM H2; and Mr. Jordi Priu, CEO of Manufactura Moderna de Metales, S.A.; participated in a round table discussion.

Fifth session

This session entitled “The geopolitics of energy and critical minerals” was moderated by Mr. Jordi Bruno, founder and director of AMPHOS 21 Group. Critical minerals have risen to the top of the geopolitical agenda. The global battery “arms race”, driven by the advent of electric vehicles, has led to a radical shift in demand for lithium, nickel, cobalt, graphite, manganese and rare earths.

The keynote address was given by Ms. Cristina Lobillo, Director of the EU Energy Platform and International Relations. Later, the round table has counted with the participation of Dr. H.C. Santiago Cuesta-López, General Director of the ICAMCYL Foundation and CEO of the Iberian sustainable mining cluster; Mrs. Mar Hidalgo, Senior Analyst, Spanish Institute for Strategic Studies (IEEE), Ministry of Defense; Mr. César Luaces, General Director of Primigea, Spanish Confederation of Mineral Raw Materials Industries; Dr. Arnoldus van den Hurk, expert in decarbonization, critical minerals and energy transition; and Ms. Rebeca Vergara, compliance lawyer, specialized in conflict, critical and transition minerals value chains.

Sixth session

Later, the last session of the CIACC 2024 was held, entitled “Sustainability reporting aligned with taxonomy” and moderated by Ms. Marta Aisa, Director of Responsible Banking and Sustainability at Santander Spain. Within the framework of the 2015 Paris Agreements and the commitment to climate neutrality from 2050, several measures have been adopted at EU level, including the establishment of the taxonomy, which allows the identification of activities that are considered to be able to contribute substantially to environmental sustainability objectives.

The keynote speech was given by Mr. Eduardo Manso, Director of Financial and Corporate Information at CNMV (National Securities Market Commission). The round table also included the participation of Ms. Carla Coloma, Global ESG Director at Fluidra; Mr. Jordi Portabella, Director of Sustainability at Futbol Club Barcelona; Ms. Marta Santamría, Director of Integrating Capitals, Portugal; and Mr. Fernando Varela, Co-Director of LEAD Sustainability.

Closing of CIACC 2024

Finally, the director of the Fundación Privada Empresa y Clima and the president of FUNIBER, Elvira Carles and Santos Gracia, respectively, brought the III International Congress on Climate Action (CIACC 2024) to a close.