How Tesco became the first corporate in the world to set a 1.5 degree science-based target

Carbon Credentials supported Tesco to set a 1.5 degree science-based target based on robust analytics and practical recommendations.


How Tesco became the first corporate in the world to set a 1.5 degree science-based target
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Background

Before setting science-based targets (SBTs), Tesco had a strong sustainability programme with stretching 2020 targets and an ambition to be zero carbon by 2050.

Tesco’s goal was to set new targets aligned with the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement that were realistic, credible and feasible.

Recognising Carbon Credentials’ technical and strategic expertise, Tesco appointed us to help achieve these aims.


Process

Carbon Credentials used a combination of methodologies to provide target setting options under 1.5°C and 2°C scenarios for Scope 1 and 2 emissions in comparison to Tesco's 2050 zero carbon ambition.

Tesco’s Scope 3 emissions were screened, showing a solid understanding of value chain impacts. As these emissions constitute over 40% of its total footprint, Scope 3 targets were modelled to meet SBTi criteria. This resulted in an overall reduction target of 17% by 2030.

To demonstrate leadership, Tesco aligned its target with a 1.5°C warming scenario and chose 2°C aligned targets for its supply chain.

Outcome

Through rigorous assessment of its emission reduction strategy, the Tesco Climate Change team demonstrated it fully understood the costs, benefits, and feasibility of setting an SBT. This enabled the team to secure agreement from Tesco senior leadership and approval from the SBTi.

Tesco’s SBTs were approved in May, attracting coverage from broadsheets like the FT and The Independent, as well as sustainability- and retail-focused platforms.


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