On the business community front lines of climate adaptation

Policy Brief / Strategy Brief

On the business community front lines of climate adaptation


July 2013


The business community is still struggling to understand how the impacts of climate change will affect their bottom line. It is nearly impossible to predict how changes in certain climates will affect weather patterns, growing seasons, crops, production, supply routes, labor, and even consumer demands. How should companies even approach such an obscure future? What industries will be affected? In what ways are different aspects of operations reliant on consistency of natural processes?

Sustainable Industries recently interviewed two authors who literally wrote the book on resilience to find out more on the topic. Cole Roberts and Alisdair McGregor are sustainable design gurus from Arup who teamed up with their colleague Fiona Cousins and others to put together the most complete, informative and accessibly written compilation of resilience information to date.

In the following interview, published in two parts, Roberts and McGrefor discuss everything from risk accumulation to vulnerability mapping to “the greatest failures of engineering." They explore concepts like competition and synergy, just-in-time delivery, and soft failure modes through the lens of resiliency, and they chart out a path toward a more sustainable future for governments, businesses, cities, communities, and individuals