Net Zero

The Official Best Net Zero Keynote Speakers to Hire in 2024

In recent years, there has been increased onus on preventing further climate change and environmental damage. The term net zero has emerged as a means of tackling climate change, but the question is – what does it mean to be net zero?

What is Net Zero

Net Zero is defined as the target of achieving a balance between the greenhouse gases that are being emitted into the atmosphere and the greenhouse gases that are being taken out. When the quantity of gas added equals what we take away, net zero is reached.

Source: National Grid

Why is Net Zero Important?

As a society, more needs to be done to combat climate change. Becoming net zero is an important factor in combatting climate change, with the International Panel on Climate Change stressing that “lower greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 lead to a higher chance of keeping peak warming to 1.5°c”.

Source: British Chambers of Commerce

How Can Net Zero Be Achieved?

Transitioning to a net zero society will be one of the biggest challenges that humankind ever faces. To become net zero, we must completely change our way of life, altering everything from how we produce products to how we consume them. One of the most significant contributing factors to climate change is fossil fuels, so the move to renewable energy sources will dramatically reduce carbon emissions.

Source: United Nations

What is Net Zero by 2050?

Net Zero by 2050 is an initiative that has devised a pathway to achieving net zero CO2 emission by the year 2050, encouraging the global energy sector to achieve net zero and minimise their impact on the planet.

Source: IEA

The Official Best Net Zero Speakers To Hire

Discover the top sustainability experts in net zero, below.

1. Sue Garrard

Former EVP of Sustainable Business Development and Communications at Unilever

A renowned thought leader on sustainable business, Sue Garrard has forged a successful career orchestrating the instrumental sustainable living plan at Unilever. As the EVP of Sustainable Business Development and Communications at Unilever, Sue was responsible for establishing sustainability as a driver of brand growth – with their sustainable living brands growing 67% faster than other brands. Recently, Sue has also established a reputation as an expert on becoming net zero, having sat on the expert panel advising the Ministry of Defence on the development of a net zero carbon strategy.

Placed at number 13 on the Top 100 Women Sustainability Influencers Worldwide list by Forbes, Sue is a popular keynote speaker to detail her knowledge of sustainable business and a net zero society.

2. Mike Barry

Former Director of Sustainable Business for Marks & Spencer

A leading advocate for sustainability, Mike Barry is famed as the former Director of Sustainable Business for Marks and Spencer. Developing and implementing Marks and Spencer’s ground-breaking sustainability programme, titled Plan A, Mike was responsible for delivering a revolutionary £750m of business benefits with aspects such as zero waste and 100% renewable electricity. Having also helped to establish carbon neutrality across Marks and Spencer stores, offices and warehouses, Mike is considered a preeminent authority on the race to become net zero.

Named Sustainable Business Innovator of the Year by the Guardian Group, Mike is now hired as a preeminent authority on sustainable business, advising businesses on how they too can negate greenhouse gases and reduce their impact on the planet.

3. Mike Coupe

Former CEO of J Sainsbury Plc

A leading figure in the retail industry, Mike Coupe has forged a respectful career as the CEO of Sainsbury’s. Having spearheaded the takeover of Argos and Habitat with the Home Retail Group, Mike has established a strong reputation for business transformation and growth. During his time as the CEO of Sainsbury’s, Mike was highly passionate about sustainability, announcing the supermarket’s mission for sustainability and achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040. Under his supervision, Sainsbury’s invested £1 billion into achieving net zero – recognising that ‘living well now also means living sustainably’.

Having reduced Sainsbury’s carbon emissions by 35% during the 15 years he worked for the company, Mike engages audiences with his expertise on lowering carbon footprints and embedding sustainability practises company-wide as a passionate net zero speaker.

4. Crispin Matson

UK Director of Ramboll Energy and Westmill Wind Farm

For the past 30 years, Crispin Matson has pioneered the energy industry with his passion for sustainability. Overseeing the installation, development and usage of renewable energy systems, Crispin has been a driving force behind countless renewable energy projects throughout the UK – from solar power and biogas to geothermal energy. As a member of the ICE London Energy Panel, Crispin encourages people to consider the role they play in climate change. Promoting scientific and policy developments within the energy industry, Crispin also emphasises the importance of moving toward a net zero-carbon economy.

Now hired as a passionate sustainability and net zero speaker, Crispin delivers a comprehensive understanding of why the world needs to use more renewable energy sources. As UK Director of Ramboll Energy and Westmill Wind Farm, don’t miss out on the authoritative sustainability expertise of Crispin Matson.

5. Lucas Joppa

Chief Environmental Officer and Environmental Scientist for Microsoft

Lucas Joppa has forged a reputation as a preeminent authority on sustainability, accelerating action to combat environmental issues worldwide. Professor Adjunct at Yale University and Chief Environmental Officer at Microsoft, Lucas is dedicated to educating the world on the importance of sustainable living and protecting the environment. As the Chief Environmental Officer at Microsoft, Lucas is developing the intersection of technology and the environment, spearheading research into ecological conservation. Also United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre Fellow and Associate Editor in Chief of the Ecological Society of America, Lucas is dedicated to seeing a more sustainable and environmentally friendly future.

Awarded the 2014 Distinguished Service Award and the 2016 USERN Prize, Lucas is now a popular speaker for a range of events centred around sustainability. Dedicated to accelerating the move toward a sustainable future and the importance of becoming net zero, don’t hesitate in hiring Lucas Joppa today.

6. Alexandra Palt

Executive Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer of L’Oréal

Currently the Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer of L’Oréal, Alexandra Palt is a dedicated sustainability pioneer who is on a mission to reach L’Oréal’s sustainability agendas by 2030. Pushing to go beyond the business model of L’Oréal, Alexandra is spearheading the L’Oréal For The Future programme and striving to make 100% of L’Oréal’s products have a social or environmental benefit. Now hired as a net zero speaker, Alexandra details how she is reducing the environmental footprint of L’Oréal by 60%.

Responsible for launching the Women4Climate events, Alexandra is now hired as a zealous advocate for sustainability and achieving net zero emissions. Pioneering sustainable business at L’Oréal, Alexandra is a fantastic choice when looking for a net zero speaker.

7. Steve Howard

Former Chief Sustainability Officer of IKEA and Co-Founder of WE MEAN BUSINESS

Pioneering environmental change in the corporate sphere for more than two decades, Steve Howard is famed for his former role as the Chief Sustainability Officer of IKEA. For six years, Steve worked at the helm of IKEA, pioneering the development of their People and Planet Positive Scheme and designing sustainable products. Having also invested €3 billion in renewable energy and ensured environmental performance, Steve most recently became the Co-Founder of WE MEAN BUSINESS, a collective of organisations, investors and businesses dedicated to combatting climate change.

Continuing his impactful work since leaving IKEA, Steve has become the Co-Chair of the Environmental and Natural Resources Global Future Council and an Advisory Board Member of Sustainable Energy for All. Dedicated to ensuring the longevity of our planet, don’t hesitate in hiring Steve Howard as a net zero speaker today.

8. Pia Heidenmark Cook

Senior Advisor & Former Chief Sustainability Officer of IKEA

Pia Heidenmark Cook is an influential figure in the realm of sustainability, who is widely responsible for the sustainability strategy of the global retail giant, IKEA. Famed as the former Chief Sustainability Officer at IKEA, Pia was tasked with developing the sustainability goals of the company and fulfilling such visions. From ethical practises surrounding wood and cotton to winning the Circular Economy Award from the WEF, Pia’s influence on IKEA has been exemplary. As of 2022, Pia has begun work as a Member of the Board of Advisors for Bupa, advising their sustainability committee.

Having delivered the TEDx talk How IKEA is Growing its Business Whilst Shrinking Emissions, Pia is now a popular choice as a net zero speaker, accelerating the move towards negating greenhouse gas emissions and their impact on the planet. Hire Pia Heidenmark Cook today to learn how to lead a sustainable business.

9. Göran Carstedt

Former President of IKEA North America and Advisor to The Clinton Climate Change Initiative

Göran Carstedt has enjoyed a respectable career as an expert on sustainability, formerly having worked as the President of IKEA North America, implementing environmental strategies across IKEA’s North American division. Having also been the Head of IKEA Retail Europe and a member of the IKEA Group Management Board, Göran has solidified his expertise across the retail industry and his reputation as a preeminent authority on sustainability. Aside from his work with IKEA, Göran is also famed as the former Senior Director of the Clinton Climate Change Initiative, responsible for collaborating with 40 of the largest cities worldwide in tackling climate change.

A seasoned speaker, Göran has previously delivered the TEDx talk Leadership for a Sustainable Future and is a popular choice when looking to hire an expert speaker on becoming net zero. Delivering future-proofed strategies for sustainable business, don’t hesitate in hiring Göran Carstedt as a net zero speaker today.

10. Michael Pawlyn

Lead Architect of The Eden Project and Author of Biomimicry in Architecture

A renowned architect, Michael Pawlyn is famed for his revolutionary concepts as the former Lead Architect of The Eden Project. Commended for his regenerative and nature-based designs, Michael is an expert at integrating sustainability into architecture and the future of buildings for a circular economy. Having also contributed to the design of other sustainable projects such as Las Palmas Water, the North Wales Tidal Energy Project and the EcoRainforest, Michael is dedicated to finding nature-based solutions to the world’s biggest challenges.

Author of Biomimicry in Architecture and Director of Exploration Architecture Limited, Michael is now a highly popular choice as a net zero speaker for events. Dedicated to creating architecture that complements the circular economy, Michael is a revolutionary figure spearheading the move to a net zero future.

11. Sally Uren

CEO of Forum for the Future

Sally Uren is a leading catalyst for transformational change in the realms of sustainability and the environment, currently working as the CEO of Forum for the Future. Delivering its mission of achieving a sustainable future, Sally works with global organisations to address the importance and complexity of sustainability. Focussing on sustainability across food, energy, clothing and shipping, Forum for the Future has benefitted from Sally’s expertise since 2013 – expertise built as the former Founder of Casella Stranger, a leading sustainability consultancy group.

Having formerly worked with brands such as Burberry, Kimberley Clark and Kingfisher, Sally has also judged the Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development and helped to define Net Positive. Appointed OBE for Services to Sustainability, don’t miss out on the expertise of Sally Uren as a net zero speaker at your next event.

12. Pen Hadow

Arctic Explorer and Ocean Conservationist

A leading polar explorer and ocean conservationist, Pen Hadow has dedicated his career to preserving our planet. As an explorer, Pen became the only person to complete a solo expedition from Canada to the North Pole and was the Founder and Leader of the Catlin Arctic Survey. Also the Director of the Arctic Mission Programme and Founder of The 90North Foundation, Pen is one of the most revolutionary figures of arctic and ocean conservation.

Named Hero of the Environment by TIME Magazine, it comes without question that Pen is a preeminent authority on how to best protect the planet. Now hired as a net zero speaker, Pen emphasises the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in preserving the Earth’s ecosystems and species.

13. Elena Morettini

Global Head of Sustainable Business for Globant

Tackling climate change one business policy and campaign at a time, Elena Morettini is the Director of Globant’s Sustainable Business Studio and Co-Founder of Because Energy Matters. An expert on ESG, energy transitions and corporate sustainability, Elena offers a range of practical guidance for businesses looking to join the ‘green’ economy. Having also led a Task Force on Energy, Resource Energy and Sustainability, Elena is an expert on advising organisations on how they can become carbon neutral and climate positive through enhanced tech adoption.

President of the Energy Transitions Commission, Elena is also highly sought after as a net zero speaker – engaging audiences on how they too can become carbon neutral and net zero.

14. Hakan Nordkvist

Head of Sustainability for IKEA Group

A leader with a human-centric vision, Hakan Nordkvist is famed as the Head of Sustainability Innovation for the IKEA Group. Joining IKEA in 2001, Hakan has worked his way through the ranks, orchestrating several ground-breaking sustainability projects along the way. Hakan’s stand-out projects include the IKEA Clean Energy Service, operating in 13 countries across the globe as one of the largest clean energy services available. Also responsible for IKEA’s circular business agenda, Hakan is dedicated to protecting the planet with innovative sustainability practices.

A pioneer of sustainability, Hakan is now a popular choice as a net zero speaker, emphasising the importance of negating greenhouse gases and environmental impact. Having sat at the helm of IKEA’s sustainable business, don’t miss out on the expertise of Hakan Nordkvist today.

15. Maria Agazio

Co-Founder of Equitable Solar Solutions

Maria Agazio

Maria Agazio is a dedicated sustainability professional, who is on a mission to implement solutions across society that allow commercial and residential buildings to operate efficiently in their surroundings. Also dedicated to diverting materials from landfill and generating renewable energy, Maria is famed as the Co-Founder of Equitable Solar Solutions – a company that provides low-income families with access to solar energy. Named the American Solar Energy Society Emerging Young Professional, Maria is committed to protecting the environment through renewable energy sources.

Named on the Forbes 30 Under 30 List, Maria has solidified her reputation as a preeminent authority on sustainability. Highly knowledgeable on various aspects of sustainability, Maria will provide an authentic yet fresh approach to achieving net zero.

16. Nigel Topping

On a mission to build a global community of climate champions dedicated to halving emissions by 2030, Nigel Topping is famed for his role as the UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP26. Attending the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference, Nigel passionately advocated for the importance of increased awareness of climate change, developing strategies to reduce the levels of greenhouse gases that are being released into the atmosphere. Transforming corporate responsibility in relation to the environment, Nigel is combatting climate change on a global level by securing policies such as the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Having formerly delivered the TEDx talk We Need to Green the Economy Whilst Restarting It, Nigel is a seasoned speaker whose expertise on net zero should not be missed.

Awarded the Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Nigel is a highly influential figure determined to rewrite the fate of our planet. Having also formerly supported the UK Presidency of the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference, Nigel is on a mission to accelerate action to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. With detailed expertise on climate change, Nigel is now hired to speak on becoming net zero, educating audiences on how they can balance their emissions to reduce their impact on the planet. When looking for an expert speaker on sustainability strategy, look no further than Nigel Topping.

Hire a Net Zero Speaker Today!

If you want to learn more about becoming net zero, don’t hesitate to book a net zero speaker today. Get in touch with one of our dedicated booking agents to secure the perfect net zero speakers for your next event, by calling directly on 0203 9355 587 or completing our online contact form.

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