Brands like Apple and Molson Coors think a future of extreme weather and climate disasters will be profitable
Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images
- Major brands are finding ways to make money on the fears surrounding and consequences of climate change.
- In disclosures to CDP - a nonprofit that asks companies about their environmental impact - companies like Apple, Disney, and Philip Morris identified ways that they could profit from natural disasters, extreme weather, and the need to reduce carbon emissions associated with climate change.
- In many cases, brands saw addressing climate change as a way to improve their public image.
In 2018, a devastating report released by The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predicted a future of extreme heatwaves, severe droughts, mass extinctions, and sea-level rise. Under these conditions, the report said, the world could experience $54 trillion worth of environmental damage.
While that scenario might be decades away, companies are already finding ways to profit from humanity's collective fears about climate-related disasters.
Read more: Big Oil claims it's doing its part to combat climate change. A new study finds it's not even close.
In January, a London-based nonprofit called CDP, which collects information from companies about their environmental impact, released thousands of company disclosures explaining how natural disasters, extreme weather, and the need to reduce carbon emissions could translate into serious money-making opportunities.
In one of the most striking disclosures, Apple noted that iPhones could help people survive in a disaster by offering flashlights and other emergency services. The company estimated that its brand value would increase by $920 million as customers began to rely on iPhones for personal safety.
Other companies saw an upside to warmer temperatures. Molson Coors predicted that the desire for beer would increase as the world experienced more frequent and extreme periods of heat.
Here are some of the ways that major brands think they can make money from climate change.
Philip Morris International says extreme weather could be good for its tobacco.
Apple predicts more natural disasters could increase demand for iPhones.
Molson Coors thinks warmer temperatures will ramp up the desire for cold beer.
Disney thinks nature-themed experiences will appeal to the environmentally-conscious.
AT&T is profiting by providing energy-saving products to companies concerned about climate change.
Coca-Cola thinks people will be drawn to its "climate-friendly" refrigerators.
Nestle thinks the changes in extreme temperature caused by climate change might favor the growth of some of their raw materials, like cocoa and sugar.
Alphabet Inc., Google's parent company, said it would see an uptick in brand loyal as more people use Google Earth to raise awareness about climate change.
Microsoft thinks it can offer customers technology that's resilient to natural disasters and severe weather events linked to climate change.
Bank of America might see "well over $10 million of additional business annually" thanks to the Paris Agreement.
Bayer AG, which recently acquired the agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology company Monsanto, disclosed it would see an increased demand for herbicides that help crops survive extreme conditions.
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