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Net zero is the new normal

Until 2021, the term net zero wasn’t universally defined; businesses setting a net zero target would have to create their own definition. This made it difficult to know how strong or weak a target and the corresponding reduction strategy was.

In response to this, the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) brought out a ‘Corporate Net-Zero Standard’ to ensure organisations were using the same framework when reporting their net zero targets.

This standard ensures targets are aligned with a reduction pathway to keep warming below 1.5˚C in line with the latest climate science. Organisations must demonstrate a 50% reduction in emissions by 2030, and a reduction of 90-95% by 2050 (or earlier if they choose).

The term ‘net zero’ emissions essentially means that there is an overall balance between the greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere, and the greenhouse gases taken out of the atmosphere (e.g. through carbon removal or ‘sequestration’). 

Businesses are critical in the fight against climate change as they are the source of most of the world’s emissions. However, they need to move quickly and immediately to ensure an effective net zero trajectory and secure their position in current and future economies.

The transition to net zero starts with a few key steps

Educate your team

Educate your team about greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the pathway to net zero. This is key so that everyone has an understanding of the process and why it’s important.

Calculate footprint

Calculate GHG emissions across all business activities, to understand your carbon footprint.
This carbon footprint operates as a baseline from which you can improve over time.

Implement systems

Implement systems and procedures for keeping track of your emissions and keeping data up to date.
Track your improvements over time and report back to stakeholders.

Set KPIs & targets

Establish a carbon accounting system.
Set emission KPIs and targets to track your progress.

While these steps will take effort to achieve, they are easy to break down into step-by-step processes that will support your transition to net zero without being overwhelming.

Businesses that lead the transition to net zero stand to gain the most

Businesses that lead the transition to net zero are not only future-proofing their business models, but improving productivity in the long term and differentiating from competitors, resulting in countless flow-on benefits to their operations, company culture, and market position.

Some of the potential benefits of reaching net zero:

Measuring your emissions and understanding your baseline is the first step. Our experts can help you get started.