Net zero has shot to prominence and is here to stay, with the conversation now shifting from “should I?” to “how do I get there?” To mark the launch of netzeroforbusinesses.com – Climate Impact Partners’ purpose-built micro-site to distil what net zero means for business, the benefits of achieving it, and how businesses can go about delivering the “net” in net zero– Alterra Hetzel, vice president of client solutions, explores the different pathways companies can take.
New resources to help companies navigate their journey to net zero
Net zero is fast becoming the dominant statement for companies to ensure their long-term resilience in a world determined to tackle climate change. But as businesses increasingly set net zero targets, companies are looking to differentiate themselves from the growing net zero crowd by financing the highest quality solutions to make their net zero goals a reality sooner.
In our white paper, The “net” in net zero, we analyse the net zero commitments of the world’s largest companies through our third annual study into the Fortune Global 500. We consider 56% as responsible net zero targets with a target date in line with government targets or the Paris Agreement and 24% as leadership net zero targets, accelerating ahead of these milestones.
We then outline three different pathways a company can adopt in the transition to net zero, the first being ”net zero only” whereby a company procures or invests in delivering sufficient carbon removal credits to neutralize its residual emissions at the point of net zero onwards, with no climate action outside the value chain on the way. The second is “carbon neutral on the way to net zero” which enables a company to compensate for their residual emissions on the journey there, financing carbon removal projects and/or reduction and avoidance projects like forest conservation. The final pathway is “net zero plus” whereby a company makes additional contributions to climate action on the way to net zero.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) latest report on climate change and what we can do to stop it. Turning to the possible solutions that companies can harness to reach net zero, it acknowledged carbon removal technologies as “necessary to achieve net zero CO2 and GHG emissions both globally and nationally, counterbalancing ‘hard-to-abate’ residual emissions.”
It found nature-based solutions projects like agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) can deliver towards a company’s net zero target and could economically remove 8-16 Gt CO2e every year between 2020 and 2050 with measures “available and ready to deploy” in contrast to other types of CO2 removal such as carbon capture and storage which are not yet as scalable. The nature-based solutions also provide the added benefit of enhancing biodiversity and contributing to sustainable development in local communities. Our white paper maps the maturity of methodologies against the availability and cost of different carbon removals, including nature-based solutions and carbon capture and storage to guide companies through the array of options.
This is the time to step in and step up, we need to use all the solutions available to make an impact. Net zero is not a passing trend – now is the time to differentiate yourself from the growing net zero crowd and finance the highest quality solutions to make your goals a reality. We look forward to working with you to get there.
Visit https://netzeroforbusinesses.com/ to discover how to complement your internal emissions abatement strategy with Climate Impact Partners’ solutions to deliver the “net” in net zero. Download the white paper or watch short videos from their team of carbon finance, project development and natural climate solutions experts.
Alterra Hetzel is the vice president of client solutions at Climate Impact Partners. You can hear her speak at the Climate Leadership Conference on Thursday, May 26, 2022, at the session “Nature Based Solutions: Ensuring Quality and Longevity”.