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The UK Hosts COP26 & Leads the Charge in the Race to Net Zero

Written by: Jenny Dunn, Energy Policy Advisor, British Embassy, and Rebecca Lewis, Regional Deputy Director – East, British Consulate General New York| Trade & Investment

All eyes are on the UK as the country prepares to host the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) on Monday, November 1 – Friday, November 12, 2021. Public and private sector entities throughout the world must work together to reduce emissions. Global strategies and actions, such as the Prime Minister’s ten point plan and the “Ambition Loop” are moving the dial in the right direction. The Prime Minister’s ten point plan is the UK’s blueprint for meeting climate targets, supporting global opportunities, and encouraging trade across innovation areas. This plan for a green industrial revolution exemplifies the affirmative approach government can take to build back better, support green jobs, and accelerate the path to net zero. The “Ambition Loop” is a positive feedback loop in which bold government policies and private sector leadership reinforce each other. Corporate leadership and strong government policy measures are spurring additional investment and action by businesses. These strategic public/private partnership campaigns are vitally important in taking climate action to the next level. The Department for International Trade, and bi-national business organizations like the British American Business Council, are playing important roles by bringing these groups together for informative meetings featuring global stakeholders and climate leaders. These, and many other sessions throughout the world, taking place in lead-up to COP26, are spearheading the collaborative efforts and plans to accelerate the transition to a prosperous net zero economy.

What is COP26 and why is it so important to tacking climate change?

In 2015, countries agreed at COP21 in Paris to limit average global temperature increase to well below 2C, aiming for 1.5C. In order to keep that 1.5C target alive, as we are determined to do, we must halve global emissions by 2030 and reach net zero emissions as soon as possible, and by 2050 at the very latest.

Business is essential to achieving this goal. We need the innovation, influence and energy of the private sector on our side and we need businesses to act now to ensure they are part of the global low carbon transition, which is accelerating. Countries and organisations aiming for net zero cover nearly 70% of GDP. Even in the midst of a global pandemic, net zero commitments doubled in 2020.

COP26 also provides a global platform to highlight businesses as global leaders in tackling climate change. In November, the eyes of the world are on the UK as we host COP26 in November following on from the G7 Leaders Summit in June. COP26 must be the moment that all parts of society act to protect the planet.

What does the UK want to achieve as COP26 President and what is the role for business?

Alok Sharma, the COP President Designate, has set out four key goals for the COP26 Presidency. Businesses are a vital component of all the goals and can help achieve success through their own action; working with peers and across their value chains; becoming positive advocates for climate action and working with governments to let them know that businesses want stronger climate policy.

From a UK Government perspective, more businesses making commitments to deliver action helps drive bold policy measures to support these efforts. For example, the UK Government has accelerated the phase-out date for polluting cars and vans to 2035, as more companies have adopted zero emission vehicle (ZEV) fleets.  In turn, those frameworks make it easier for business to achieve their own goals.

We are asking all businesses to take immediate action to reduce emissions by joining the Race to Zero.  This requires businesses to take robust short-term action to halve global emissions by 2030, and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. We need both large businesses, as well as smaller ones to sign up.

What is the Race to Zero?

The UN-backed Race to Zero campaign is the largest global alliance of companies, cities, investors, regions and universities committed, based on science, to halving global emissions by 2030 and achieving net zero emissions by 2050 at the very latest. Over 3,000 businesses have now joined the Race to Zero, representing a combined revenue of almost US$15 trillion.

Major US firms such as: American Airlines, Johnson and Johnson, Pepsi, Microsoft, Amazon, Ford Motor Company, Pfizer, FMC Corporation, and Livent are spearheading important climate change efforts by joining the Race to Zero. In addition, commitments by significant metropolitan regions, such as the City of Philadelphia, are leading by example. In January 2021, Jim Kenney, Mayor of Philadelphia and Christine Knapp, Director, Office of Sustainability, published a climate action playbook highlighting the City’s plans to reduce contribution to climate change by eliminating carbon emissions from three sectors: Buildings and Industry, Transportation, and Waste. Click here to access the report.

Are corporate net-zero targets realistic/achievable?

Though a net zero commitment is ambitious, companies are demonstrating it is achievable, often realising targets ahead of schedule at the same time as driving business growth. Indeed, a recent analysis of 338 companies that have set science-based targets shows that they have collectively reduced their annual emissions by 25% between 2015 and 2019. Reducing emissions more quickly while incurring lower costs than expected chimes with UK Government experience too. The UK, between 1990 and 2018, has reduced our emissions by 43% – the fastest rate in the G7 – whilst growing our economy by 75%.

One of the most powerful aspects of committing to science-based emissions targets is that it requires businesses to ensure a comprehensive understanding of their value chains in order to eliminate their carbon footprint. Sixty-three percent of company executives say setting science-based targets drives innovation.

Hannah Young, Acting Consul General New York, reports “2021’s Climate Week in September, alongside the UN General Assembly will be a crucial stepping stone – as well as the British American Business and World Affair Council’s early October event – in the lead up to COP 26 in Glasgow this November. Now is the time to act whilst we can effect change, mobilise capital, support a green global recovery, and safeguard the planet for future generations.”

You can find general background on the Race to Zero, more detail on the criteria for entry and leadership practices here. The Race to Zero campaign comprises a number of initiatives that businesses (and other non-State actors) can join to become part of the Race to Zero. A full list is available here.

Fall 2021 BABCPHL New Members

Corporate Members:

Bryn Mawr Trust Company
400 E. Lancaster Ave.
Wayne PA 19087
Website: https://www.bmt.com/

Alyssa Vidal
Vice President, Capital Markets
Capital Markets Sales and Trading
P: (610) 254-2014
E: avidal@bmtc.com

Mark Henderson, CFA
Senior Vice President, Capital Markets
Director of International Services
P: (610) 263-4608
E: mhenderson@bmtc.com

Neil Orechiwsky
SVP, Managing Director of Capital Markets
E: norechiwsky@bmtc.com

Bryn Mawr Trust’s (BMT) mission is to provide the highest quality banking, investment, and insurance solutions while simultaneously dedicating themselves to making a positive, lasting impact in the communities in which they serve. For more than 130 years, BMT has focused on providing the best solutions in private banking, wealth management, and a wide array of financial products and risk management. The Company operates in 35 full-service retail bank locations and has been named America’s Best Bank in Pennsylvania for 2021 by Newsweek. Their personalized approach is what sets them apart as they collaborate with their clients to ensure their needs are always met. BMT is headquartered in suburban Philadelphia and has offices in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware.

Capital One Bank
1000 Continental Drive
King of Prussia PA 19406
Website: www.capitalone.com

Larry Worsham
Senior Manager
P: 267-785-1590
E: larry.worsham@capitalone.com

Capital One’s mission is to help customers succeed by bringing ingenuity, simplicity, and humanity to banking. The company was founded on the belief that the banking industry would be revolutionized by information and technology, beginning with credit cards. Capital One is now the nation’s fifth-largest consumer bank and eighth-largest bank overall. Founder-led by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Richard Fairbank, the company believes that innovation is powered by perspective and that teamwork and respect for each other lead to superior results. Capital One is building customer experiences that are real-time and intelligent. They measure  efforts by the success their customers enjoy and the advocacy they exhibit. In support of their mission, Capital One developed the Capital One Impact Initiative to advance socioeconomic mobility by advocating for an inclusive society, building thriving communities, and creating financial tools that enrich lives. This program is fueled by an initial $200 million multi-year commitment to catalyze economic growth in low- and moderate-income communities and close gaps in equity and opportunity.

Littus – Market Entry Platform
1845 Walnut Street
Suite 980
Philadelphia PA 19103
Website: https://littus.us/

Paul Maguire
Managing Director
P: 610-457-3548
E: pmaguire@littus.us

Rob Rae
P: 610-389-7559
E: rrae@littus.us

Littus is a services based market entry platform connecting foreign businesses wishing to enter their USA Market ecosystems with subject matter experts across the business infrastructure disciplines necessary to facilitate efficient growth in the USA. Littus also represents foreign Economic Development agencies and their clients in gaining an understanding of USA market entry nest practices.

These specialist areas include legal (company formation, immigration, IP, contracts), accounting, taxation, business development, financial, insurance, recruitment and HR.

These connections can be delivered as part of soft-landing project management programs, trade missions (virtual or live) general referrals and one-on-one development programs.

Non-Profit & Government Partner:

Philadelphia International Airport
8500 Essington Avenue
Philadelphia PA 19153
Website: https://www.phl.org/

Chellie Cameron

Stephanie Wear
Director, Air Service Development & Cargo Services

Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) proudly connects Philadelphia with the world. PHL is the only major airport serving the nation’s 6th largest metropolitan area, is a large hub airport serving 32.24 million passengers annually. Twenty-five airlines, including all major domestic carriers, offer nearly 500 daily departures to more than 140 destinations worldwide. Located seven miles from downtown Philadelphia, the Airport is easily accessible and convenient to many tourist sites, business centers, and cultural hubs. The Airport is self-sustaining and uses no local tax dollars. PHL is one of the largest economic engines in the region, generating $16.8 billion to the economy and accounting for 106,000 full-time jobs annually.

Club Level Feature – Welsh Government

The Welsh Government is the devolved Government for Wales, UK. With five offices located in the Embassy and Consulates throughout the US, we are constantly working alongside our colleagues across UK Government to achieve the highly ambitious agenda established for us here in the USA by Ministers back in Wales. As laid out in our international strategy found here, we are focused on increasing the profile and influence of Wales in the world through our three core ambitions.

Ambition 1: Raise Wales’ profile internationally

  • We are focused on developing and forging political networks at Federal and State level to identify opportunities to showcase Wales.  We build on this by working with sporting and cultural partners in Wales on annual visit plans to identify opportunities to support whilst in market, building strong diaspora networks across the whole of the USA using our representative offices,  building and managing a small group of high quality contacts to support the wider remit of the team, encouraging research partnerships and student exchange programmes between American and Welsh Universities, using St David’s Day as a platform to promote Wales and increasing Wales’ profile through a focused communications plan including an increased use of social media.

Ambition 2: Grow our economy by helping businesses in Wales increase exports and attracting high quality inward investment

  • We work with partners such as the British American Business Association and DIT to identify export opportunities within the US market aligned to capabilities of Welsh companies. Such focused sectors include energy, life sciences and aerospace. We also work with our Trade Support Team in Wales to increase the number of Welsh companies undertaking export focus visits to the US by providing direct support ahead of and during visits. We proactively focus on the key sectors of compound semi-conductors, cyber security and creative industries to outline the capabilities in Wales in terms of skills availability, R&D capabilities, property and access to funding.
  • We also partner with multipliers such as DIT, Chambers of Commerce and business groups to outline the strengths of Wales and jointly target business with investment potential. Our objective is to build and maintain strong relationships with decision makers within existing US investors in Wales to understand current plans and identify opportunities for reinvestment.

Ambition 3: Establish Wales as a globally responsible nation

  • We work directly with international organisations, such as the United Nations to highlight areas where Wales has a strong message. We promote bilingualism and share our expertise in order to promote and support minority and indigenous languages while working with wider Welsh Government teams to promote achievements around the Well-being of Future Generations Act and recycling successes as examples. We also work with both Welsh based research institutions and universities and similarly aligned think tanks, educational and research institutions and companies to highlight Wales’ approach and commitment to areas such as sustainability and renewable energy research.

To deliver all of these ambitious objectives, Dr. Zowie Hay has recently been appointed as the Head of Welsh Government in North America. Based in Washington DC, Dr. Hay oversees the team across the USA as well as our operations in Canada. She remains deeply committed to continuing to strengthen our links in the Greater Philadelphia region to help us deliver these objectives. For more on Wales and the activities of the Welsh Government across the world, please visit www.wales.com.

Fall 2021 President’s Letter

Dear BABCPHL Members and Friends,

I hope this message finds you well. It’s hard to believe summer has come and gone and we are “back to school.” For many, the month of September is characterized by new beginnings and a fresh start. A few weeks ago, I transitioned to a new role with Santander Commercial Banking. As Managing Director, Head of Business Development, I am responsible for overseeing the Business Development and Cash Management sales teams, and driving the new client acquisition growth strategy for the Commercial Bank. It is an honor to continue in my role as President of the British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia, and I look forward to enhancing our relationship with current and new members. It’s a time for renewed growth and opportunity, and the BABCPHL is here to help you and your business expand your transatlantic operations.

We have an exciting line-up of events from now through the end of the calendar year. Please visit our website for a complete roster of our programs. Content includes priority matters such as global travel, climate change, and diversity, equity and inclusion, to mention the focus of some of our upcoming activities.

Your health and safety are our number one priority. While we prefer to always meet face-to-face, for now our operations have resumed virtually. The silver lining is our increased partnership with the 22-Chapter British American Business Network across the world, and the ability to attract industry leaders to join us for speaking engagements from different time zones. We are stronger together! Thank you for your partnership and I look forward to meeting with you often now and in the future.


Nick Lotz

President, British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia

BABCPHL Board Member Feature – Ian Cross

As company founder and principal of Web firm, I-SITE, entrepreneur Ian Cross wears many hats including product strategy, market development and new business development. He loves web and digital technology and enjoys staying involved throughout the project cycle. Ian believes that I-SITE’s many long-term client relationships serve as a testament to the firm’s customer service, attention to detail and creativity.

Ian has been involved with the BABCPHL now for over 20 years and appreciates the organization’s professionalism, commitment and eagerness to evolve and stay relevant which is not an easy task.” He was hooked after winning two round trip tickets to London at his first Signature Annual Holiday Lunch in the late nineties! As one of the few digital and marketing experts in the BABC Ian especially enjoyed collaborating on a couple of the BABCPHL panel events that have been focused on the use of technology and the Internet in transatlantic business. Ian states, “The BABC strikes a fantastic balance between professional and social events. In terms of great memories I would have to say the Young Professionals event at The Trestle Inn is another favorite. The energy of the annual program is as great as the whiskey sours, although as The Trestle Inn owner I’m a little biased.”

Throughout the pandemic, Zoom has developed and surprised many of us with overwhelming participation and engagement; however, Ian, like many others, has most missed face-to-face interaction at events. The pandemic has given him the opportunity to step back and put everything into perspective, especially both his personal and professional relationships. Ian has been grateful for the BABCPHL and its members throughout the pandemic. He says, “the BABC really has felt like a family throughout.” Once restrictions are lifted, not much will change for Ian, as he is busy reopening the bar and working on some exciting I-SITE projects. Once he finally gets a break, he is planning to travel to Iceland to see the latest eruption.

In closing, Ian states, “I’m proud to be a member of an organization that I believe has risen to the challenge of COVID-19. Can only see an increase in business and opportunity as we emerge and look forward to meeting and collaborating with everyone involved.”

BABCPHL Board Member Feature – Rebecca Lewis

Rebecca Lewis is the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Deputy Regional Director, East and US DIT COP26 Lead. Rebecca supports the leadership of a team of 30 trade and investment professionals, who focus on transatlantic opportunities for jobs and growth between the UK, and Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. In addition, she leads DIT’s business engagement on Climate. Currently, Rebecca is working with her Embassy and London colleagues to accelerate the race to netzero climate commitments.

Rebecca has been an active member of the BABCPHL since 2013.  She has served multiple years on the board and works closely with the organization to collaborate on events. The British Consulate and DIT work closely with the BABCPHL because it makes sense! DIT’s and the BABCPHL’s objectives align for strong regional engagement with industry for trade and investment growth between the UK and Philadelphia. Rebecca’s favorite BABCPHL memory is taking the City’s trade delegation to the Houses of Parliament and visiting the Elizabeth Tower and Big Ben. She also thoroughly enjoyed visiting Philadelphia before the pandemic when Mayor Kenney signed the Powering Past Coal Alliance for the City of Philadelphia.

Throughout the pandemic, Rebecca has most missed seeing people, such as her regular coffee cart man outside the office. Rebecca has remained optimistic during the pandemic and has welcomed the new level of digital engagement between the US and UK, which has created “a whole new accessible and truly global world of opportunities.” She has also been grateful to be narrowing her carbon footprint by not traveling quite as much for work during the pandemic. However, she cannot wait to jump on a plane and go home to the UK once the restrictions are lifted. This is the longest Rebecca has ever had to be away from her home and family.

Member Feature – Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia brings area businesses and civic leaders together to promote, grow and create opportunity in the region. Members represent eleven counties, three states, and roughly 600,000 employees from thousands of member companies and organizations. The Chamber advocates for regional development business-friendly public policies and economic prosperity. The Organization supports members with practical inspiring programs, events and resources. Everything that the Chamber does serves one clear bold goal: to make Greater Philadelphia a great place for good business. The Chamber is a private, non-profit organization, and the BABCPHL is an affiliate of the Chamber. We are proud to share office space, and collaborate with our Chamber colleagues.

Member Feature – US Commercial Service Philadelphia

The US Commercial Service Philadelphia, part of the US Department of Commerce and the International Trade Administration, is one of more than 100 US Commercial Service offices throughout the United States as well as over 100 Commercial Service offices in over 75 countries located in US Embassies and Consulates worldwide. The Agency offers companies a full range of international trade expertise through an extensive global network of experienced trade professionals, resources, international buyer connections, and market information. The US Commercial Service assists with everything from an initial export sale to expansion into new markets. The Agency’s mission is to provide connections that create lucrative opportunities and help clients increase their bottom line. In addition, the Philadelphia office partners with a number of statewide organizations that help Pennsylvania exporters. By supporting and being part of an export assistance ecosystem, the Philadelphia office delivers the assistance exporters need to carry out their objectives. The BABCPHL proudly collaborates with the US Commercial Service Philadelphia to promote UK-related trade and business expansion efforts.

Member Feature – Philadelphia International Airport

Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) proudly connects Philadelphia with the world. PHL is the only major airport serving the nation’s 6th largest metropolitan area, is a large hub airport serving 32.24 million passengers annually. Twenty-five airlines, including all major domestic carriers, offer nearly 500 daily departures to more than 140 destinations worldwide. Located seven miles from downtown Philadelphia, the Airport is easily accessible and convenient to many tourist sites, business centers, and cultural hubs. The Airport is self-sustaining and uses no local tax dollars. PHL is one of the largest economic engines in the region, generating $16.8 billion to the economy and accounting for 106,000 full-time jobs annually.

Spring 2021 Human Interest Feature – Welcoming Our New Young Professionals Group Co-Leaders

Written by: Brianna Adams, Coordinator, British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia

The British American Business Council of Greater Philadelphia is excited to announce our recently appointed Young Professionals Group Co-leaders – Citrin Cooperman’s Karly Clark and Johnson, Kendall & Johnson’s Michael McGuire.

Karly is a member of Citrin Cooperman’s International Tax Group. She specializes in US tax compliance and planning for individuals with international tax matters. A CPA with more than six years of experience, Karly is a contributing writer on international taxation and serves clients in an array of industries including entertainment, finance, and professional services. Outside of work, Karly enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and her beloved daughter, Kylie, who will be celebrating her second birthday this August.

Michael is Vice President of Commercial Insurance at Johnson, Kendall & Johnson (JKJ). Michael is responsible for both the management of insurance programs for existing clients, and the development of new client relationships. His clients span numerous industries, such as Healthcare, Manufacturing/Distribution, and Nonprofit. Through the Institutes, Michael has earned both the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and Associate in Risk Management (ARM) designations.  Outside of work, Michael is involved with several nonprofit organizations in Philadelphia, including Bethesda Project, YouthBuild Philadelphia, Starfinder Foundation, and the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. Michael received his Bachelor of Business Administration in Risk Management and Insurance from Temple University’s Fox School of Business in 2015, where he graduated summa cum laude. In his free time, Michael is an avid golfer and Jeopardy enthusiast.

Karly and Michael have been actively involved with the BABCPHL during the past several years. Both Citrin Cooperman and JKJ are Club Level members, sponsoring and participating in all BABCPHL activities.  Our events have enabled Karly to develop new relationships with BABCPHL members from different industries and backgrounds. Karly says, “this has been instrumental in expanding my own knowledge and personal growth.” She also reports she enjoys the opportunity to promote the Young Professionals Group to other individuals. Michael also values the diverse group of individuals he connects with through the BABCPHL, and the unique event opportunities the Organization provides. Michael says, “I have a particular affinity for British food and drink, and UK-related sporting event programs.”

Karly and Michael are excited to begin their journey as BABCPHL YPG Co-Leaders. Both have high hopes and expectations about how they can expand the program. Karly plans to work to increase awareness about the Young Professionals Group and to ensure BABCPHL members continue to take advantage of the resources the Organization offers. She is excited she and Michael have the opportunity to contribute to the organization in which they have been participating in for the past several years. They know they will face unique challenges, but are optimistic they will be able to experiment with innovative ways to connect and engage with BABCPHL membership, and tackle problems head-on. Michael is hopeful about being able to host several in-person events this year (if government restrictions allow) and to grow the BABCPHL YPG membership base by getting current member companies involved and by looking for young professionals outside of the BABCPHL membership. He is excited to work with Karly to forge new paths and opportunities for the BABCPHL YPG during these dynamic and unpredictable times. Michael is also looking forward to helping young Philadelphia-based professionals expand their network to the UK market.

The BABCPHL is honored to welcome Karly and Michael to their new role as Young Professionals Group Co-Leaders. We cannot wait to see how the program evolves with Karly and Michael’s creative ideas and dedication.

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The BABCPHL recognizes our Club Level Members:

  • Almac
  • American Airlines
  • Cigna
  • Cigna
  • Duane Morris
  • EisnerAmper LLP
  • Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  • Fisher Phillips
  • HSBC
  • International Products Corporation
  • Johnson, Kendall & Johnson, Inc.
  • KPMG
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Penn Medicine
  • Welsh Government