Published 3 years ago.
About a 3 minute read.
SBTi has released a new paper that lays the foundations for establishing credible, science-based net-zero targets for the corporate sector.
Today, the Science Based Targets initiative
(SBTi) launches a process to develop the first science-based global standard
for corporate net-zero target-setting, to ensure that companies’ targets
translate into action that is consistent with achieving a net-zero world by no
later than 2050 — in accordance with the recommendations in the IPCC’s 2018
Special Report on
warned that global emissions must drop to net zero by 2050 for the best chance
of avoiding the most catastrophic impacts of climate change.
The process coincides with the publication of a new paper that lays out the
conceptual foundations for credible, science-based net-zero targets for the
SBTI’s new paper, Foundations for Science-Based Net-Zero Target Setting in the
Corporate Sector, lays the foundations for corporate net-zero target-setting —
including clarity on what it means for companies to reach net-zero
analysis of existing net-zero target-setting practices, assessment of strategies
consistent with achieving a net-zero economy, and initial recommendations for
science-based net-zero goals. The conceptual foundations discussed in the paper
will be translated into guidelines and criteria to be developed into a global
standard, as part of a continued multi-stakeholder process.
The SBTi evaluates whether companies’ greenhouse gas emissions-reduction targets
are consistent with keeping warming to below 1.5°C above pre-industrial
Unlock customer insights on sustainability & your brand’s unique performance! Submit your brand (or any brand) into the 2024 annual study and receive unparalleled insights on customer perception of that brand’s performance. Benchmark how your customers rate your brand on social and environmental sustainability and overall brand trust, while seeing how your brand compares to others in the study. Space is limited! The deadline to become part of the study is January 15, 2024.
In July 2019, SBTi, the UN Global Compact and the We Mean Business
coalition announced that 28 companies — with a combined market capitalization
of $1.3 trillion — had set the bar for corporate climate ambitions by joining
Business Ambition for
The campaign saw the companies committing themselves to more ambitious climate
targets aligned with reaching net-zero emissions by no later than 2050. Since
the launch of the campaign, enrollment in the initiative has ballooned to over
Among the new paper’s conclusions:
For a corporate net-zero target to be science-based, it must lead to
decarbonization necessary in the global economy to limit warming to 1.5°C.
Companies may choose to offset their
as they transition towards net zero, but offsetting does not eliminate the
need to reduce emissions in line with science — this must remain the
overarching priority for companies and the central focus of any credible
“Net zero by 2050 is our north star, but every second that passes between now
and then will determine whether we get there. There is no time to lose,”
asserted Alberto Carrillo Pineda, a report author and Director of Science
Based Targets at CDP, a partner of SBTi. “Alongside long-term ambition, we
need to see aggressive emissions reductions in line with climate science, now,
and across all sectors of the global economy. Hundreds of companies around the
world are already showing that this is possible and putting their trust in
science to build the zero-carbon economy of the future.”
The private sector’s uptake of science-based
— over 970 companies have
committed to set
science-based targets and 460 have targets validated by the SBTi; more and more
companies are committing to not just net zero, but time-bound, net-positive
and just yesterday, Google threw down its own gauntlet when it announced it
has erased its entire “carbon
— may be signs that the transition to a zero-carbon economy is indeed underway.
Published Sep 15, 2020 8am EDT / 5am PDT / 1pm BST / 2pm CEST