A new report by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has found that only one in 40 large UK companies have fully adopted the most challenging “gold-standard” targets for transitioning to net zero, raising concerns that slow progress and varied approaches to carbon emissions are jeopardising the country’s green finance ambitions. The Transition Plan Taskforce was established to develop a framework for ensuring that transition plans produced by large firms in high-carbon sectors are detailed enough, credible, actionable, and comparable. One of their recommendations is the “science-based targets initiative” (SBTi), which requires businesses to set interim science-based targets across all scopes to support long-term net-zero plans. According to the IPPR, just one in 20 have signed up in principle for the SBTi, which means that the vast majority of claims by companies to be “green” can’t be compared or are not fully supported by science. Greenwashing is the process of conveying a false impression or misleading information about how a company’s products are environmentally friendly, and the report highlights the fuzzy and sometimes contradictory array of ways companies currently claim their progress towards net zero, which it says makes it easier for some companies to greenwash their reputations. The report advocates for the government to establish consistent timelines and ensure continual progress towards achieving net zero and establishing a new “Office for Climate and Environmental Targets” to publicly blacklist companies that fail to meet agreed standards. The IPPR’s report also advocates for a further environmental target beyond simply net zero to ensure that impacts on nature, biodiversity and use of resources are included in the assessment.
It is important that carbon credit schemes also benefit local communities.
The World Meteorological Organisation has stated that 193 countries have given unanimous backing to a scheme to monitor global greenhouse...