KPMG sets 2030 net-zero target

The target covers KPMG's global operations

In a new climate roadmap, published today (9 November), the firm outlined plans to halve greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across all scopes by 2030, against a 2019 baseline. These plans have been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative in line with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5C trajectory.

One of the major actions KMPG will take to meet this target is procuring 100% renewable electricity. It has set a 2022 deadline for nations with mature infrastructure and policies on renewables and a 2030 deadline for its broader global network, which spans 147 nations. KPMG’s previous renewables target was to meet 60% of global consumption with clean energy by the end of 2020.

To address the remaining 50% of emissions, KPMG will invest in carbon offsetting. It said in a statement that it will use “externally accredited” carbon credit schemes but did not provide information on specific schemes.

As well as these broad, centralised targets, KPMG has developed a forecasting model that will help its network of firms develop interim goals. This model maps the impact and sources of emissions and how changes in policy could impact emissions.  

KPMG International’s chairman and chief executive Bill Thomas said the company realises it “must go further” in terms of climate action.

“Our carbon reduction plan will aid not only our own progress towards reducing the effects of the climate on tomorrow’s world, but it will also contribute to our clients’ efforts to reduce their end to end carbon footprint,” Thomas said. “With this new set of global commitments across KPMG, I am confident that we are making the right decisions today to make a difference tomorrow.”

KPMG’s clients include Citigroup, Accenture and General Electric.

Sector-wide change

The professional services sector is one of the biggest employers in the UK and, as such, must be a key contributor to the net-zero journey.

Back in September, PwC also made a commitment to halve emissions across all scopes by 2030 and to reach net-zero by offsetting residual emissions. 85% of the firm’s carbon footprint in 2019 was attributable to flights, so it sees teleconferencing technologies as a key part of its plans.

Competitor EY set out a vision to reach net-zero by the end of 2020 back in January.

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Sarah George

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