Corporations slow down climate action after COP26

2nd November 2022


Major corporations have admitted a "noticeable drop" in climate action since COP26, with less than half decarbonising in line with a landmark international agreement on climate change.

International climate consultancy EcoAct’s 2022 Corporate Climate Reporting Performance Report investigated the emissions data of international businesses across stock market exchanges including the FTSE, DOW, DAX, CAC, FTSE MIB and IBEX, and found a diminishing appetite for corporate net-zero and decarbonisation targets.

Only 48% of FTSE 100 businesses achieved Scope 1 and 2 emissions cuts in line with the Paris Agreement of 1.5°C, down from 72% in 2021. A total of 97% of FTSE 100 firms do not have long-term targets for Scope 1 and 2, while 96% have none for Scope 3.

The study also reveals that commitments to net-zero are significantly slowing down. Despite a 21% year-on-year increase in businesses setting net-zero targets last year – especially in the run-up to COP26 in Glasgow – this dropped to 11% in 2022, although three quarters of corporations now have a net-zero target.

“The climate reality of today means that this positive intent does not go nearly far enough – deep emissions cuts are needed across all businesses in all industries,” said EcoAct chief executive Stuart Lemmon. “Many businesses have become well-versed in the requirements of climate disclosures but, ultimately, the majority are still failing to act across Scopes 1, 2 and 3 in a way that will limit the temperature rise to 1.5°C.

“Last year COP26 built phenomenal momentum; however, it appears that this progress has stalled. Far fewer businesses achieved emissions reductions this year, after we saw significant reductions as a result of COVID-19. Businesses have now a fresh set of economic and geopolitical challenges to contend with.”

Image credit | Shutterstock

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