We Mean Business Coalition’s Response to the UN High-Level Expert Group on the Net-Zero Emissions Commitments of Non-State Entities ReportMaría Mendiluce, CEO, We Mean Business Coalition
The United Nations High-Level Expert Group on the Net-Zero Emissions Commitments of Non-State Entities today (November 8, 2022) released a new report. Integrity Matters: Net Zero Commitments by Businesses, Financial Institutions, Cities and Regions, builds on credible existing initiatives like Race to Zero and the Science Based Targets initiative, setting tight definitions for what it means to be net zero and net zero‑aligned.
A response from María Mendiluce, CEO, We Mean Business Coalition:
“Businesses want clear standards and rules that define what net zero means. The High Level Expert Group’s recommendations will bring integrity, transparency and accountability to the pledges and actions delivered by business. This will make greenwashing easier to detect and allow those companies that are really delivering on climate action to stand out from the crowd. It leaves nowhere to hide for those businesses that are delaying or denying the need for urgent emission reductions.
The recommendations are very aligned with our newly launched Climate leadership framework which includes guidance to companies on target setting through the Science Based Targets initiative and SME Climate Hub.
Companies can align themselves with the recommendations of this report by using our new consolidated guidance on how to develop a climate transition action plan, which lays out how companies can move from ambition into action. Importantly, it also highlights the need for companies to responsibly engage with policymakers.
We particularly welcome the clear instruction for business to prioritize urgent and deep reduction of emissions across their value chain. There is much work still to be done for companies to understand their value chain footprint and how to engage with suppliers to cut it.
We also welcome the group’s recognition that companies must invest in nature beyond their value chains and emphasise that this must happen right now alongside cutting their emissions in line with science. A high-integrity voluntary carbon market could raise billions of dollars a year in additional climate finance to remove carbon, cut emissions and benefit communities and ecosystems more broadly. We cannot delay on this.
There is no more time to lose, but if business and governments can now align around a new global consensus on what net zero actually requires, this gives a very clear direction of travel to cut emissions in half by 2030 and build a safe and secure future for all.”
For more discussion of how to accelerate the transition to a net zero economy, join the COP27 Business Pavilion in person or via livestream, November 8-17, 2022.