Responsible Business Forum joins Climate Governance Initiative and launches Chapter Zero Poland

10 maja 2021

Dotyczy firmy: BNP Paribas Bank Polska, Deloitte, Santander Bank Polska, Siemens,

The Responsible Business Forum, the largest and oldest organisation promoting responsible business and sustainable development standards in Poland, joins the global Climate Governance Initiative, managed by the Centre for Climate Engagement, Hughes Hall of the University of Cambridge, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum. The involvement of the Responsible Business Forum will make it possible to launch Chapter Zero Poland, a programme to develop the competencies of supervisory/non-executive directors of companies with regard to climate challenges. Deloitte Polska is a content partner for the programme.

The Climate Governance Initiative has so far established thirteen national and regional branches of the initiative to promote the adoption of the Principles for Effective Climate Governance (see more >>) published by the World Economic Forum. The purpose of the CGI is to enable those on supervisory boards to:

  • improve climate change awareness and understand the risks and opportunities that the climate emergency poses to the long-term resilience and business success of their companies;
  • develop the competencies needed to play a proactive role in driving an effective climate transition strategy, in alignment with the goals of the Paris Agreement;
  • embed climate considerations in their decision-making processes;
  • set clear, transparent targets that put their companies on track to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 or earlier, with medium and near-term targets that ensure appropriate actions are taken promptly.

– The idea behind the Climate Governance Initiative is to support and expedite the necessary activities to combat climate change. It is hard to overemphasize the role of business in this process, although of course cooperation and involvement of all the sectors is necessary. We are already seeing increasingly ambitious reduction targets being adopted by companies as part of their low-carbon and zero-carbon transition policies. Business leaders, aware of the need for urgent climate action, including climate risk management, are also behind these decisions. What business in Poland needs today are conscious ambassadors for climate transition, and Chapter Zero Poland, the Polish chapter of the Climate Governance Initiative, provides them with a platform to expand knowledge and share experience – says Marzena Strzelczak, President, General Director of the Responsible Business Forum, in charge of the implementation of the Climate Governance Initiative in Poland.

– The climate emergency is a fact and its impact on business will only grow. Embedding climate considerations in business strategies is a priority and the need of the hour. The Polish market joining the Climate Governance Initiative through Chapter Zero Poland is a ground-breaking step which allows Polish business leaders, especially members of supervisory boards, to actively participate in activities of companies from all over the world aimed at embedding climate considerations in their decision-making processes – says Irena Pichola, Partner at Deloitte Polska.

Chapter Zero Poland, part of the Climate Governance Initiative, is a programme supporting the development of competencies of supervisory bodies. The purpose of the Polish Chapter of this international initiative is to raise awareness of the consequences of climate change for companies and of the impact of business on climate. The programme, based on international cooperation, is intended to provide knowledge and tools as well as a platform for the sharing of experience for members of supervisory boards and the expert community dealing with climate change in Poland and internationally. You can read more about the programme on the website which has just been launched at

The leading and decision-making body of Chapter Zero Poland will be the Steering Committee, which currently consists of:

  • Dominika Bettman, Member of the Supervisory Board of Santander Bank Polska, President of Siemens Polska;
  • Irena Pichola, Partner with Deloitte Polska;
  • Marzena Strzelczak, President, General Director of the Responsible Business Forum;
  • Piotr Wachowiak, Rector of SGH Warsaw School of Economics, Member of the Enterprise Council to the President of the Republic of Poland.

– In addition to the threat to global health and economy, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought one more, very serious risk: the environmental protection measures to be pushed out of the list of absolute top-priorities. However, such a serious disruption is a red alert signaling the urgent need for pro-climate activities – by societies, governments, NGOs and businesses. Today it is of highest importance to mobilize and unite strong partners led by shared values of sustainable development – says Dominika Bettman, CEO Siemens Polska.

Chapter Zero Poland will also have an Advisory Committee. It will be composed of members of supervisory boards, the scientific community and experts on the topic. It will serve as an advisor to the Steering Committee, and will indicate potential ways forward for the programme.

– I am honoured to join Chapter Zero Poland, aiming to build a community of supervisory board directors that will lead crucial boardroom discussions on the impacts of climate change. Business decisions can slow or accelerate climate change, and climate change will drive risks and opportunities for business. Board directors, following the Principles of Effective Climate Governance, will be able to ensure that climate-related risks and opportunities are appropriately addressed. This is a duty that boards of directors have in their long-term stewardship of the companies they oversee. I believe there is a lot to do in Poland and we will be successful in gathering a large community of directors to Chapter Zero – says Lucyna Stańczak-Wuczyńska Deputy Chairman, BNP Paribas Bank Polska S.A.

To join Chapter Zero Poland, applicants must complete a questionnaire available online at: Applications are verified by the Project’s Steering Committee which approves candidates. Participation is open to, among others, members of a supervisory board or corporate management and for non-members of those bodies who are involved in climate change considerations.

Organiser in Poland: Responsible Business Forum

Content Partner: Deloitte

Media Partner: Rzeczpospolita