The Swiss perfume brand has built on its 2020 goal to reduce absolute emissions by 20% by having its emissions reduction goal for direct and electricity emissions verified by the SBTi. The 39% reduction goal, which has a 2030 target deadline, has been verified alongside a 20% reduction goal for Scope 3 emissions.

“I am proud that Firmenich is one of only 149 companies to have its goals approved by the Science Based Targets initiative,” Firmenich’s chief executive Gilbert Ghostine said.

“These ambitious targets challenge us to work even harder to reduce our environmental footprint, while actively engaging with our suppliers and customers to reduce CO2 emissions through our supply chain.”

Firmenich invests 10% of its turnover in R&D and is striving towards its 2020 sustainability targets. Alongside the 20% CO2 aim, the perfume company is aiming to source 100% of electricity used in manufacturing sites from renewable sources.

Water use will also be decreased by 25% in areas considered water-stressed, while waste efficiency rates will also be improved by 15%. The company is targeting zero waste sent to landfill across manufacturing sites and will eliminate the use of ozone-depleting refrigerant gases at these sites.

Since 2015, Firmenich has recorded a 12% reduction in absolute emissions, sourced 37% of manufacturing site electricity from renewables and achieved a 41% reduction in waste sent to landfill.

2C to 1.5C

While more than 490 businesses have joined the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) since it launched in 2015 – and a further 800 have made public pledges to set science-based targets in the near future – only TescoBT and Carlsberg have set goals in line with the Paris Agreement’s most ambitious 1.5C trajectory.

Following the publication of a global report outlining the consequences of global warming increasing by 0.5C, the SBTi will soon offer new tools that enable companies to set more ambitious carbon reduction targets that are aligned with pathways to a 1.5C world.  

However, organisations involved in the initiative are still imploring companies to set targets aligned to climate science.

The World Resources Institute’s – one of the SBTi partners – director of private climate mitigation Cynthia Cummis said: “We congratulate Firmenich for committing to strong science-based targets, thus contributing to the global effort to keep global warming below the two-degree threshold set by the 2015 Paris Agreement.

“We are delighted that they are working closely with their suppliers to cut their greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and thus accelerate climate mitigation.”

Science-based targets at edie’s Sustainability Leaders Forum

Representatives from the only three companies – Tesco, Carlsberg and BT – to align themselves with the 1.5C trajectory will appear at edie’s Sustainability Leaders Forum to discuss the importance of setting science-based goals.

The two-day event, taking place 5 & 6 February 2019 at the Building Design Centre, London, will also include debates on how to solve the plastics crisis and the state of corporate action on sustainable packaging. 

For more information and to register for the Forum, click here.

Matt Mace

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie