Bedrijven worden aangespoord om CO2-emissies in te dammen

Non-profitorganisatie CDP lanceert vandaag zijn jaarlijkse Science Based Targets (SBT) campagne, gericht op het indammen van CO2-emissies. CDP heeft opnieuw een lange lijst van investeerders (recordaantal van 220 uit 26 landen, waaronder Aegon Asset Management, NN Group en Robeco) rond zich verzameld die samen 1600 bedrijven wereldwijd aansporen om ambitieuze en controleerbare emissiedoelstellingen te formuleren die wetenschappelijk gefundeerd zijn en aansluiten op het Parijsakkoord. Het gaat onder meer om Airbus, NXP Semiconductors, Lufthansa, Samsung en Tata Steel. Opgeteld stoten de 1600 aangeschreven bedrijven meer uit dan de VS en Europa samen, en maken ze 36% uit van de MSCI World Index.

De campagne van vorig jaar heeft bijgedragen tot een sterke impuls van het aantal bedrijven dat zich daarna aansloot bij de SBTi, het Science Based Targets Initiative. 154 bedrijven, met een gezamenlijke uitstoot die ongeveer gelijk is aan het jaarlijkse totaal van Duitsland en goed voor een marktkapitalisatie van 5.200 miljard dollar, hebben zich sinds vorig jaar als nieuwkomers aangesloten.

Wereldwijd nemen al meer dan 1775 bedrijven deel aan het SBTi, waarvan er meer dan 550 doelen hebben gesteld die in overeenstemming zijn met ‘1,5°C’. Uit analyses is gebleken dat bedrijven met een doelstelling hun emissies doorgaans met 6,4% per jaar hebben verminderd – ruim boven de 4,2% lineaire vermindering die nodig is om te voldoen aan de 1,5°C-doelstelling van de overeenkomst van Parijs.

Voor Laurent Babikian, Joint Global Director Capital Markets bij CDP, komt het ontbreken van een uitstootdoel neer op een rode vlag: “Geen SBT betekent dat bedrijven er niet in slagen klimaatrisico’s te beheersen. In de aanloop naar COP26 moeten we meer ambitie zien bij de bedrijven die verantwoordelijk zijn voor het grootste deel van de wereldwijde uitstoot, als we een CO2-neutrale economie willen.”

Financiers with $29 trillion ask 1600 companies for science-based targets ahead of COP26

  • 220 global financial institutions holding $29.3 trillion in assets call on world’s highest impact companies to urgently set science-based emissions reduction targets in line with 1.5°C warming scenarios;[1]
  • Number of investors and lenders writing to corporate CEOs grows 60% year on year, targeting companies responsible for more emissions than the EU and US combined;
  • Aliaxis, Colruyt and Umicore, Lufthansa, Samsung and Tata Steel among high-emitting companies specifically requested;
  • Coordinated by non-profit CDP, the 2021 SBT Campaign is the world’s largest investor engagement campaign specifically requesting companies to set science-based targets through the SBTi[2];
  • Following last year’s campaign, over 154 new companies with emissions equal to Germany joined the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – 8% of all those targeted by the campaign.
  • Companies with science-based targets in place have typically cut emissions by 4% per year, well above the average rate needed for 1.5°C alignment

September 29, 2021 (Berlin / London): Financial institutions holding $29.3 trillion in assets are today calling on the world’s most impactful businesses to set science-based emissions reduction targets in line with 1.5°C warming scenarios, ahead of COP26 in November.[3]

The request is signed by 220 financial institutions across 26 countries, and whose collective assets are worth more than the GDP of the United States, China, or the entire EU.[4] It represents significant growth in support by 60% on last year, with an increase of 51% in assets behind the call to action.

The group includes some of the world’s biggest investors and lenders like Amundi, Candriam, DPAM, Legal & General Investment Management, Insight Investment Management, AXA Group, DWS Group and Allianz.

They are pressing 1600 companies to set emissions reduction targets through the Science Based Targets initiative to ensure that corporate ambition is independently verified against the de-facto industry standard for robust and credible climate targets. From July 2022, these must be aligned with a 1.5°C pathway to be approved.

The 2021 CDP Science-Based Targets campaign is coordinated by the non-profit charity CDP, which runs the environmental reporting system.

Joining the financial institutions in asking for SBTs this year are 26 CDP supply chain members – large corporate buyers using CDP to green their supply chain – including L’Oréal, Renault Group, Bayer, AstraZeneca and HP Inc, with $500 billion in annual procurement.

CDP sent the letter to over 1600 companies worldwide, including Aliaxis, Colruyt and Umicore, Anhui Conch Cement, China’s biggest cement manufacturer, Hyundai Motor Company, Duke Energy, Associated British Foods, Nippon Steel, Tata Steel, Lufthansa and Samsung.

The businesses targeted have a market capitalization of over $41 trillion, make up 36% of the entire MSCI World Index, and account for 11.9 million tonnes of emissions (scope 1 and scope 2), equivalent to more than the annual total of the United States and European Union combined.[5]

Over 20% of companies by global market capitalization are already part of the SBTi.[6]

David Czupryna, Head of ESG Development at Candriam, commented: “Candriam strongly supports the adoption by companies of climate related targets that are sector-specific, fact-based and aligned with well below 1.5°C objectives. The SBT Initiative provides a comprehensive framework to assess such alignment and forms an integral part of the systematic climate risk/opportunity analysis performed by Candriam investment analysts on all our investments.”

Jean-Jacques Barbéris, Director of the Institutional and Corporate Clients division & ESG at Amundi, said: “Today, we fully integrate the emissions trajectory of the companies we invest in. Adapting their business models to the climate challenge as well as aligning with the Paris Agreement is not just desirable anymore, but a necessity to ensure long-term growth and profitability. The adoption of emissions reduction targets by both corporates and investors is critical to transition collectively to a decarbonized economy. Encouraging companies to adopt science-based targets is part of Amundi’s broader engagement to support climate action”.

Last year’s CDP Science Based Targets campaign contributed to strong momentum of the number of companies joining the SBTi. 154 companies, with emissions approximately equivalent to Germany’s annual total and a market capitalization of $5.2 trillion, joined since this time last year. It represents 8.1% of the companies targeted in this campaign last year.

56% of companies asked by CDP reported that the campaign had a direct influence over their decision, while 96% reported that general investor pressure led to them setting a target.[7]

The campaign also shows the major role played by European financial institutions in corporate engagement on climate issues. 75% of all investors and lenders signing the letter are based in Europe (including the UK), with 79% of the total assets. Asset managers and pension funds are the most supportive of the campaign, making up nearly 9 out of 10 organizations.

Laurent Babikian, Joint Global Director Capital Markets at CDP, said: “2021 has been a year when global financial institutions have committed en masse to achieve net zero by 2050. But these goals are impossible to achieve without the companies they lend to and invest in having robust science-based targets that drive rapid decarbonization in the entire value chain in line with a maximum of 1.5°C of global warming. It is that simple, and when so many investors and lenders are collectively saying the same thing, companies must act or risk seeing their cost of capital rise. Not having an SBT raises a red flag that they are failing to manage climate risk. Ahead of COP26, we must see greater ambition from the companies accountable for the bulk of global emissions if we are to achieve a net-zero emissions economy, and mitigate the most serious impacts of climate change, which have been all too visible in 2021 so far.”

Globally, over 1775 companies are already part of the SBTi, among which over 550 have approved targets in line with 1.5°C. Analysis has shown that the typical company with a target has cut emissions by 6.4% per year – well above the 4.2% linear reduction rate required to meet the Paris agreement’s 1.5°C goal.

Over the last two decades, CDP has created a system that has resulted in unparalleled engagement on environmental issues worldwide with investors and businesses alike. This campaign combines CDP’s track record, and expertise as a founding partner of the SBTi, to use investor authority to take disclosure and carbon mitigation further.

While companies can set science-based targets at any point throughout the year, CDP will be engaging these companies to join the SBTi before September 2022, when the impact of this campaign will be evaluated.

[1] The group includes asset managers, banks, insurance companies and pension funds with total reported assets of US$24.558 trillion.

[2] The Science Based Targets initiative criteria for setting a science-based emissions target is published here.

[3] High impact refers to both emissions and market capitalization. The sample and methodology for selecting the 1700 companies is published here.

[4] World Bank, 2020.

[5] The volume of Scope 1 + Scope 2 emissions of the 1700 companies is 11.9 GtCO2e, as per CDP analysis in 2021. US emissions from 2019, and EU from 2019.

[6] SBTi progress report, January 2021.

[7] CDP survey of SBTi-committed companies in June 2021. Based on 22 companies responding, worth $198 billion in market capitalization.

Categories: Duurzaam, Research