As businesses globally aim to align their operations with sustainable practices, setting a Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi) goal becomes not just beneficial, but essential. If you’re ready to enhance your sustainability strategy, here’s your comprehensive guide on what SBTi entails, why it matters, and how to integrate it into your operations effectively.

What is the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi)?

The Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi) encourages companies to set carbon reduction targets in line with what the latest climate science deems necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement — limiting global warming to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C. SBTi not only promotes corporate leadership on climate action but also ensures that your targets are aligned with scientifically validated pathways. Explore detailed resources and guidance on their official website.

Why Establish an SBTi Goal?

  1. Ethical Responsibility: Beyond strategic advantages, committing to science-based targets is fundamentally about doing the right thing. It reflects a commitment to future generations, ensuring a healthier planet and sustainable practices that contribute positively to global efforts against climate change.
  2. Competitive Edge: Companies with science-based targets can improve their market differentiation, becoming more attractive to investors, partners, and customers who prioritize sustainability.
  3. Financial Performance: Many companies find that integrating rigorous, science-based environmental goals leads to improved operational efficiencies and reductions in energy consumption, ultimately saving costs.
  4. Risk Management: Proactively managing future regulatory changes and shifts in market preferences can safeguard your company from rising costs associated with carbon and other greenhouse gases.
  5. Innovation and Growth: The pursuit of science-based targets often drives innovation, opening up new business avenues and solutions that meet evolving consumer demands.

How to Set Up an SBTi Goal

Step 1: Commitment Begin by signing a commitment letter to the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi), which formalizes your intent to set a science-based target. This commitment is a critical first step in demonstrating your dedication to effective climate action.

Step 2: Develop an Emissions Inventory Create a detailed inventory of your current emissions across all relevant scopes (1, 2, and 3). This comprehensive inventory will serve as the foundation for your target-setting efforts, providing a clear baseline against which reductions can be measured.

Step 3: Set the Targets Using the SBTi’s criteria, define clear, actionable targets for reducing emissions. These should be measurable and designed to achieve specific outcomes within set timeframes, typically aiming for a 5-15 year horizon.

Step 4: Submit for Validation Once your targets are developed, submit them to the SBTi for validation to ensure they align with the initiative’s stringent criteria. This step is crucial for those wishing to claim their targets as “science-based.” For a detailed breakdown of this process, visit the Step-by-Step Process on the SBTi website.

Step 5: Implement the Strategy With validated targets in place, integrate these into your business strategy through new policies, systems, and practices. This might involve investing in renewable energy, enhancing efficiency, or redesigning products and services for better environmental performance.

Step 6: Track and Report Progress Regularly monitor and report your emissions and progress against targets using tools and methodologies approved by SBTi. Transparent reporting is key to maintaining stakeholder trust and building on your sustainability achievements.

Step 7: Recalibrate as Needed As your business and the external environment evolve, revisit and adjust your targets and strategies to stay on course. Continuous improvement will help you stay aligned with emerging technologies and scientific insights.

Start now – don’t wait

By embedding SBTi into your sustainability framework, you not only contribute positively to the global climate effort but also build a resilient, forward-thinking business. Ready to set your sights on a greener future? Dive into setting your SBTi goals with our new platform capabilities, designed to guide you every step of the way.

By Clima