San Francisco Melbourne Model Pilot
Business Council on Climate Change (BC3)

1 Jun 2005


San Francisco’s project as a UNGCCP Innovating City has been the establishment of the Business Council on Climate Change (BC3), a partnership of 100+ San Francisco Bay Area businesses committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The BC3 project, now an independent not-for-profit organisation, grew from San Francisco’s original commitment to develop one of the first innovating projects in the original UN Global Compact Cities Pilot Program. This began in June 2005, when the City and County of San Francisco hosted United Nations World Environment Day (WED). At this event, Mayor Gavin Newsom signed on to the UN Global Compact Cities Pilot Program. Follow this link for more information on the establishment of BC3.

The aim of San Francisco’s project was to capitalise on the Bay Area’s entrepreneurial culture to create a thriving economy, while at the same time contributing to public dialogue and positive action on climate change.

BC3 Today

As a member-driven organisation, BC3 companies of all sizes are actively committed to implementing “5 Principles of Climate Leadership.”

  • Principle 1: Internal Implementation
  • Principle 2: Community Leaders
  • Principle 3: Advocacy and Dialogue
  • Principle 4: Collective Action
  • Principle5: Transparency and Disclosure

BC3 members collaborate to share ideas and real-world case studies, identify valuable tools, participate in educational forums, and establish best practices. As a result, BC3 members demonstrate leadership, as well as drive economic growth, environmental sustainability and social well-being in our community.

Member companies of the BC3 believe that climate change offers corporate leaders an unprecedented opportunity to shift practices to realize economic growth, environmental sustainability, and social well-being.

Click here to view a full list of project participants, or here to visit the Business Council of Climate Change website.

Project Contact

Michael Parks, Executive Director, BC3

Ms Jennifer Kass, Deputy Director, SF Environment

Project Background

The objective of the project was to make San Francisco a model city for climate stewardship. The City of San Francisco adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2004, setting a greenhouse gas (ghg) reduction goal of 20% below 1990 levels by the year 2012. The City’s Global Compact project sought to inspire and enable its business and residential sectors, two of its large ghg emissions sources, to track and reduce their emissions.


  • To provide meaningful actions for business to combat global warming

  • To facilitate a forum to share best practice

  • To assist in focus the region’s entrepreneurial spirit and ingenuity on issues that are important for the future


Private Sector


Civil Society


The basic BC3 model is simple: we identify aspects of San Francisco’s climate strategy that no sector can tackle alone; bring powerful but traditionally isolated institutions together around the same table to develop model solutions (typically via working groups facilitated by partner organisations); and work to scale the best solutions over time.


Phase 1

  1. Create and expand the Business Council on Climate Change (BC3), a coalition of San Francisco Bay Area businesses, which will provide a framework for the business sector to identify the risks and opportunities of climate change. The Bay Area Council, the San Francisco Department of the Environment and the UN Global Compact are the three co-sponsors of the BC3.
  2. Create and ratify the Principles for Climate Leadership, a set of principles on Internal Implementation, Community Leadership, Advocacy, Collective Action and Transparency, to which all the BC3 member companies will commit.
  3. Facilitate needs assessment for member companies to identify ghg reduction actions and implementation policies.
  4. Develop and maintain a knowledge base of all emissions reduction policies, implementation tools and best practices.
  5. Create a BC3 Secretariat to monitor and showcase progress, particularly the overall emissions reductions from BC3 members. Member companies will track their own progress in implementing the Principles, and regularly disclose their emissions reduction goals, actions and outcomes.
  6. Establish partnerships and reciprocal memberships with other Bay Area coalitions and initiatives focused on mitigating climate change.

Phase 2

  1. Utilize the BC3 platform to reach out to residential sector through employee education and community outreach.

Future plans and actions

Our network now focuses on helping our community meet its long-term goal of 80% emission reductions by 2050 as well as it near-term “0-50-100-roots” strategy:

  • Send 0 waste to landfill
  • Shift 50 percent of trips to sustainable modes of transportation
  • Achieve 100 percent renewable energy use
  • Sequester greenhouse gas emissions (roots) via urban and regional natural resource management

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