The Science Based Targets initiative turns five: what now?

December 2020 marked the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement – the world’s commitment to limit global warming below 2°C – and the Science Based Targets initiative, an effort to mobilise rapid change in the private sector through science-led emissions reduction targets.

Science Based Targets Initiative
Over the past five years, it has become clear that even these ambitions will need to be strengthened if we are to tackle the world’s climate challenges. Instead of 2°C, warming of just 1.5°C is the new standard; more than 360 of the 1,000 companies working with the Science Based Targets initiative have already committed to this more ambitious framework.

Companies that haven’t yet acted are coming under increasing pressure to do so, including from their investors. A campaign led by CDP and 137 global financial institutions is asking the 1,800 companies with the biggest climate impact - which together represent 25% of total global emissions - to set science-based targets by the end of 2021.

The coming decade will be critical in the fight against climate change. If we are to make progress, most global emissions reductions will need to take place by 2030. Decisions made today will have impacts far into the future. But it’s not too late to act.

The Luminous view
Setting a science-based carbon reduction target is now an essential step for every company. Such targets not only reduce further impacts from climate change and future-proof the business; they also help companies to communicate their commitments more clearly under an array of climate disclosure frameworks.

If you would like to discuss how Luminous can help you with your carbon reduction target, please get in touch.

Read our ESG edition of Reporting Matters.