CANCUN, Mexico — At the unveiling of the first annual Gigaton Awards, six companies were recognized as leaders in their respective industries. The Gigaton winners and their sectors are: Suzlon (Energy), Vodafone Group (Telecommunications), Reckitt Benckiser Group (Consumer Staples), Nike (Consumer Discretionary), 3M (Industrials) and GDF Suez (Utilities).
The Gigaton Prizes were developed and awarded by the Carbon War Room, a non-profit organization that harnesses the power of entrepreneurs to implement market-driven solutions to climate change. The awards ceremony took place during the World Climate Summit and was co-hosted by Sir Richard Branson and José María Figueres and sponsored by ECCO2, in partnership with Fuseproject and Televisa.
"Today marks an important milestone in the fight against climate change," Branson, who is the co-founder of the Carbon War Room, said in a statement. "These companies demonstrate the potential the business community has in developing innovative solutions that are good for the environment and the economy. The world's leaders need to embrace the fact that there does not have to be a trade-off between the economy and the environment, and these awards prove that."
The Gigaton Prize is the top recognition bestowed by the Gigaton Awards, which are designed to inspire and challenge businesses to make a difference to climate change and global sustainability. The Gigaton Awards Ceremony also recognized leaders across six major sectors and Ted Turner was given an honorary award.
The six Gigaton Award winners were:
• Nike for its energy savings program aimed at reducing its global greenhouse gas emissions,
• Reckitt Benckiser Group for demonstrating its leadership in mitigating risk from climate change and sustainable practices,
• Suzlon for its achievement in managing its emissions and overall sustainability milestones,
• 3M for its leadership in improving energy efficiency and sustainable practices,
• Vodafone Group for its new business which provides carbon reducing connections, and
• GDF Suez for its demonstrated leadership by emitting among the lowest CO2 per kilowatt-hour produced in Europe.
"Now more than ever the world needs role models to offer a pathway to climate stability," said Sunil Paul, founder of the Gigaton Awards and the Gigaton Throwdown. "The winners of the inaugural Gigaton Awards do just that, and we look forward to the swelling of their ranks."
The selection of winners was made by an independent Academy, comprised of business and civic leaders, and based on demonstrated leadership and quantitative measures. For more information about The Gigaton Awards, visit Gigaton-Awards.com.