Corporate climate progress fall well short of targets
The climate plans of major companies continue to fall short—but there are some bright spots.
The second annual report examining the net-zero plans of climate-leading global companies found little improvement over the last year as their self-reported decarbonization plans continue to fall well behind the stated ambitions to cut their emissions. Despite concerns about their plans and the overall gap, the report also highlighted the best practices among these companies.
The Corporate Climate Responsibility Monitor 2023 published Monday found that the combined net-zero pledges of 24 industry-leading companies would reduce their total greenhouse-gas emissions by 36% by their respective target years, typically 2040 or 2050, compared with the at least 90% emission reductions needed.
The 22 companies with 2030 targets would deliver an average reduction of 15% of their real emissions, far below the 50% target the United Nations’ Race to Zero campaign endorses. The report also raised concerns about plans that rely on carbon offsets, provide misleading disclosures and exclude emission sources in supply chains.
The gap is particularly stark as these businesses are part of the U.N.-backed Race to Zero campaign. Responsible for 4% of global greenhouse-gas emissions, they span eight sectors including automobiles, fashion, food and technology and have combined yearly revenue of more than $3 trillion. The analysis was done by nonprofits NewClimate Institute and Carbon Market Watch.