Sage sets 1.5C science-based targets as Kier gets net-zero validation

Sage pledged to pledged to reduce Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions by 50% by 2030.

Sage Group has received validation from the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) for a new commitment to halve emissions across all scopes by 2030. This commitment has a 2019 baseline.

The SBTi has verified that the target is in line with the 1.5C pathway of the Paris Agreement.

Sage Group’s priority focus areas for addressing Scope 1 (direct) and 2 (power-related) emissions include improving energy efficiency and procuring renewable electricity for its workplaces. At present, it meets 45% of its global electricity consumption needs. It will plan ways of increasing this proportion, including for employees working remotely and in hybrid patterns.

Additionally, Sage is refreshing its approach to employee engagement on climate. It will soon launch a Carbon Literacy programme for staff.

As with many other large businesses, Sage sees a significant proportion of its emissions arising from Scope 3 (indirect) sources. It is therefore requesting that all suppliers measure and disclose “accurate and verified” data on their emissions to Sage via CDP. Suppliers without their own SBTi-approved targets are also being encouraged and supported to set them.

Sage’s executive VP for sustainability and society, Elisa Moscolin, said: “As a FTSE 100 corporation, we have an important role to play in driving sustainable business practices, but our ambition goes beyond our four walls: we are just as focused on empowering small and medium businesses across the world to get to net-zero.

“With the right plans and people in place, I’m looking forward to making progress against our targets and sharing our successes and learnings to ignite sustainable change across our ecosystem.”

Some 3,200 companies have set targets verified by the SBTi and around 11% of them are in the technology sector.

The SBTi is in the process of phasing out 2C-aligned targets in a bid to push corporates to be more ambitious and align with 1.5C. It has also begun to ‘name and shame’ businesses that fail to follow through on commitments to have their emissions goals verified.

Kier Group

In related news, Kier Highways Ltd has had new emissions goals verified by the SBTi as 1.5C-aligned through to 2030 and aligned with the initiative’s Net-Zero Standard in the longer term.

The Net-Zero Standard requires companies to reduce emissions across all scopes by at least 90% by 2050 at the latest.

Kier Highways has pledged to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions by more than 97% by 2039. It will also reduce Scope 3 emissions by 90% by 2045. This will enable it to create a net-zero value chain by this point. It is hoping to bring the former targets forward if possible.

In the meantime, interim targets have been set to reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 50.4% by 2030. To help deliver this, Kier Highways will transition to 100% renewable electricity, up from 0% in the 2018 baseline year.

Kier Group, the parent company of Kier Highways, is currently awaiting SBTi verificiation for group-wide emissions targets – both near-term and longer-term.

“Reducing our emissions as quickly as possible in order to help limit the impact of climate change is a top priority for us,” said Kier Transportation’s head of environment and sustainability Matt Tompsett.

“We are already seeing the impacts of climate change all around us in the form of extreme weather. This impacts our staff, our local communities and our ability to deliver our projects for our clients.”

The SBTi’s chief impact officer Maria Outters is a guest on edie’s most recent Sustainability Uncovered podcast episode. Click here to listen as she answers some of your FAQs about science-based targets.

Comments (1)

  1. Richard Phillips says:

    I do wonder how accurately it is possible to measure cause and effect phenomena in climate matters, It is a matter which seems to me to be highly complex, and open misleading phenomena.

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