The driving force behind SBTs is the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi), a joint initiative by CDP, UNGC, WRI and WWF. It created methods and criteria for SBTs and validates company targets. Such targets must have a time frame between 5 and 15 years, and cover scope 1 and 2 in accordance with Greenhouse Gas Protocol standard. If a company's scope 3 emissions cover more than 40% of its overall scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, targets must also cover scope 3.
Furthermore, company targets have to focus on emission reductions within the company's own value chain. Offsets, as well as avoided emissions, are not counted toward science-based targets but can be an option for a financial contribution toward emissions reduction beyond SBTs.
Take a look at the SBTi criteria for more detailed information.
Setting science-based targets has many benefits for companies such as improved brand reputation, increased innovation or bottom line savings. Companies can also set SBTs if they already have an emissions reduction target.
Sources: Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) 2021
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