Over the Easter bank holiday, the Science Based Targets inititative (SBTi) released its eagerly awaited updated guidance and criteria.
The new guidance has come in response to the IPCC’s Special Report on 1.5°C released in October 2018 which highlighted the stark difference in negative climate change impacts of 1.5 and 2 degrees of warming. With the new knowledge presented by this report, the SBTi took swift action to update criteria so that targets aligned with 2 degrees of warming would no longer be sufficient.
What have the SBTi released?
Version 4.0 of SBTi Criteria and Recommendations
Science-based target setting foundations paper – insights into the SBTi’s process for developing its science-based target setting methodologies
Science-based target setting tool – model targets using the Sectoral Decarbonisation Approach and the Absolute Contraction Approach
Target validation protocol – a guide to how the SBTi validate targets
The new criteria will come into effect on the 15th of October 2019
From that date, the SBTi will only approve targets aligned with “well-below” 2 degrees or 1.5 degrees
Sectoral Decarbonisation Approach methods have only been updated to a “beyond 2 degrees” pathway, therefore intensity targets must be tested against absolute emission reduction criteria for 1.5 degrees
Scope 3 targets aligned with 2 degrees can still be approved
If your target has already been approved, there are still some important messages to take note of:
The SBTi will be analysing and publishing the level of ambition of targets that have already been approved on their website
Companies that already have their targets approved will be invited to increased the level of their target ambition
A new criteria has been introduced for mandatory target recalculation meaning that targets must be reviewed and, if necessary, recalculated every 5 years in line with the latest science
All companies with already approved targets must review their targets by 2025 at the latest
We are really proud to have helped both Tesco and Pukka Herbs achieve sign off on their 1.5 degree aligned targets, making them two of a small pool of companies to have raised the level of ambition this high.
For guidance on how your company can join the mission to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, contact us on email@example.com and our well-equipped science-based target setting team can talk you through the process.