Launch of Climate Action Platform for Delivering Carbon Neutrality in Hard-to-Abate Sectors by Mid-Century

New York, 24 September 2019 – The World Economic Forum and the Energy Transitions Commission have launched the Mission Possible Platform to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by mid-century from a group of traditionally “hard-to-abate” industry sectors. The platform will host a series of climate initiatives, bringing together business leaders from heavy industry and heavy-duty transport sectors to work on concrete actions to set these carbon-intensive sectors on a path to climate neutrality, in collaboration with a network of experts and policy partners.

Responsible for about a third of global CO2 energy emissions today, heavy industry and heavy-duty transport have a vital role to play in limiting global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, and as close to possible to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The Mission Possible Platform focuses on driving down emissions from the following heavy industry sectors: aviation, heavy-duty road transport, shipping, aluminium, cement and concrete, chemicals, and iron and steel.

Globally, CO2 emissions have gone up by 2% since the Paris Agreement. Emissions from the seven sectors covered by the Mission Possible Platform are projected to reach 15.7Gt by 2050, far from the net-zero target that the IPCC recommends. However, the Mission Possible Report published by the Energy Transitions Commission in 2018 has raised hope by demonstrating that it is technically and economically possible for hard-to-abate sectors to reach net-zero carbon emissions by mid-century at a cost to the economy of less than 0.5% of global GDP, and with a minor impact on consumer prices.

Building on the conclusions from the Mission Possible Report, the Mission Possible Platform seeks to align the industry and transport sectors’ decarbonization pathways with the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6°F), and as close to possible to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7°F). It aims to put the hard-to-abate sectors of the economy on path to net-zero emissions to avoid the dangerous consequences of not doing so outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) 2018 Special Report.

The Mission Possible Platform focuses on seven carbon-intensive value chains. Each sectoral initiative seeks to commit companies to ambitious emissions reduction targets and to foster collaborations to scale innovative solutions and create a favourable environment for low-carbon investment. The Platform brings together a variety of actors from business, finance, civil society and policy who will jointly work on establishing enabling policies, attracting sustainable finance, creating demand signals for low-carbon materials and services, as well accelerating the development of new technologies for the low-carbon transition of heavy industry and heavy-duty transport sectors.

The Mission Possible Platform will also collaborate with the Leadership Group for Industry Transition that Sweden and India together with several other countries and industry leaders launched at the UN Secretary General’s Climate Action Summit. The Leadership Group will work to accelerate the transition of the hard-to-abate industry sectors towards low-carbon industrial development while pursuing efforts to reach net zero carbon emissions and is the outcome of the Summit Industry track.

These are the initial Mission Possible initiatives, to be completed by new workstreams in the future:

  • Clean Skies for Tomorrow:  An initiative of high ambition CEO champions convened by WEF and Rocky Mountain Institute to accelerate the energy transition to sustainable aviation fuels towards carbon-neutral flying.
  • Clean Road Freight Coalition: A platform for multi-stakeholder collaboration along the trucking value chain for advancing a net-zero CO2 emissions goal.
  • Getting to Zero Shipping Coalition: A coalition across the maritime, fuels and infrastructure value chains committed to getting commercially viable zero-emissions vessels into operation by 2030.
  • Circular Cars Initiative: A cross-industry alliance to advance shared, electric and automated mobility.
  • Aluminium for Climate: An initiative of high-ambition CEOs to develop low-carbon smelting and refining processes, increase renewable energy sourcing and recycling rates.
  • Clean Cement and Concrete Coalition: A coalition aimed at convening a business leadership group for a net-zero future in a sector where half the emissions stem from the production process itself rather than energy consumption.
  • Collaborative Innovation for Low-Carbon Emitting Technologies in Chemicals: A coalition focused on chemical industry emissions reduction led by the Chemistry and Advanced Materials Governors Community at the World Economic Forum.
  • Net-Zero Steel Initiative: An initiative mobilising corporate leadership to shape a favourable policy, market and finance environment for low carbon investment and unlock pathways to zero-emissions steel.

‘Individual companies cannot achieve the clean industry transition by themselves. The heavy industry and transport sectors need to come together to be able to fight climate change and move towards a net-zero economy by 2050,’ said Dominic Waughray, Head, Platform for Global Public Goods, World Economic Forum

‘The ETC’s Mission Possible Report showed that it is possible for the hard-to-abate sectors of the economy to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 at a low economic cost. What we need now are the policies and investments which will drive a rapid transition. The Mission Possible Platform will work with leading companies in each sector to accelerate that transition,’ said Lord Adair Turner, Chair, Energy Transitions Commission

More information on the Mission Possible Platform, its initiatives and partners can be found at