Record-breaking number of companies set science-based climate targets in 2021

A study by the Science-Based Targets initiative has revealed more firms than ever are taking environmental responsibility into their own hands.

In 2021 records were broken for the number of companies that have introduced new climate targets based on proven facts and evidence. 

The annual Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi) Progress Report, which will be published on Thursday 12th May, shows that 2,253 companies based in 70 countries, representing 15 industries and a combined $38tn – or one third – of global market capitalisation approved emissions reduction targets or commitments in 2021. 

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Some 80% of these were aligned with aims to limit global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels. In the five years to 2020, the majority of businesses with such policies cut emissions twice as fast as the goal actually requires. Overall, a global ‘critical mass’ has been reached of 20% science-based target adoption among high impact companies. 

G20 countries that are often linked to significant contributions to the climate crisis and global emissions emergency also saw a significant increase in the number of companies taking matters into their own hand.

Countries like India, China, Brazil, South Africa and South Korea were all represented in the list, although the G8 nations still dominate, with 55% of all companies that are taking action based in these territories, although Canada and Italy lag behind. 

The SBTi is now calling on companies to align with its Net Zero Standard to speed up the reduction in corporate emissions. Currently, 11 companies involved have approved net-zero targets and 1,000 companies are committed. 

In related news, the UK government has been advised to introduce ‘sustainability-linked’ bonds, following examples already set by Chile.

Photo by Medienstürmer


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