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The International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) is in the final stages of determining the technical content for the first two Sustainability Standards, set to launch towards the end of June 2023.

Considered a short turnaround in industry terms, these standards will become effective for reporting periods starting on, or after, 1 January 2024, with an expectation that the first corporate reports aligned with these frameworks will be issued in 2025.

Effective preparation for ISSB reporting should begin immediately for businesses looking to get ahead.

The initial disclosure standards will be:

IFRS S1: General Requirements for Disclosure of Sustainability-related Financial Information

  • Relevant to corporates globally, across all sectors. Outlined as the “core baseline” of sustainability reporting, which will attempt to unify disclosures on factors such as waste and emissions.
  • The standard will clearly set out how companies can integrate reporting, linking sustainability-related and financial information.
  • In addition, IFRS S1 will outline plans for companies to disclose all material sustainability-related risks and opportunities.

IFRS S2: Climate-related Disclosures

The short period between the release of these standards and their date of implementation is a demonstration of a powerful response to the strong demand from global investors for consistent, comprehensive and transparent information.

Leading up to the release of the ISSB Standards, the ISSB will focus on developing additional guidance and training materials to support the application of IFRS S1 and IFRS S2. They will also introduce programs to aid reporting entities in appropriately and consistently implementing these standards, as market infrastructure and capacity for dealing with both standards are established.

How Simply Sustainable can help?

Effective disclosure and performance reporting are vital to improve your scoring on ESG ratings and in increasing investor confidence. Investors want to understand how ESG fits into the company strategy and how material topics are managed. At the same time, they may expect the business to align its reporting with key disclosure frameworks such as GRI, SASB and TCFD as well as the impending ISSB disclosures.

Whether businesses are only beginning their reporting journey, or looking to expand to more holistic disclosure, GRI and SASB provide excellent foundations to build upon or to continue to attract a diverse range of stakeholders. Over 324 global institutional investors use SASB standards to review standardised and comparable disclosure that informs their investment decision-making.

Simply Sustainable has worked with large companies on their reporting and disclosures for over 13 years.

We ensure that your reporting is geared towards the interests of your investors and that it aligns with key disclosure frameworks so that they have the necessary information to make decisions about your business.

If you would like more information on how we can help you with your reporting and materiality assessments, please contact us or request a call back.

Author: Ed Packshaw, Head of Reporting and Communications

The Carbon Disclosure Project, informally known as CDP, has emerged as a critical global platform, holding the largest environmental database in the world. The platform primarily facilitates transparent reporting and disclosure to drive sustainable practices across industries. With approximately 20,000 organisations disclosing data on climate change, water security and deforestation issues via CDP, 2022 set a new milestone for disclosure – a 38% increase since 2021 – including listed companies worth US$60.8 trillion (half of the global market capitalisation)1.

Over time, the platform has evolved to reflect the most recent climate science and global policy developments. The 2015 Paris Agreement marked a turning point in the global response to climate change, demonstrating that ‘business as usual’ is no longer sufficient.

Objectives

CDP’s primary objective is encouraging organisations and cities to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, protect water resources and preserve forests. CDP accomplishes this by offering a solid and standardised platform for organisations to voluntarily report their environmental data annually.

The structure of the CDP climate change questionnaire was redesigned in recent years in response to market needs and trends in corporate climate change reporting. Revisions included an increased emphasis on forward-looking metrics, improved alignment with other reporting frameworks and the integration of sector-specific questions.

Significance in climate change mitigation

CDP promotes transparency and accountability by pushing organisations to measure and report their carbon emissions and climate-related data. This incentivises implementing comprehensive sustainability policies, whilst providing stakeholders with crucial information for informed decision-making. Beyond corporate boundaries, CDP allows investors to assess the climate risks and opportunities associated with their portfolios, ultimately promoting a shift towards greener investments2. This harmonisation will help to optimise reporting and accelerate the generation of decision-useful information.

CDP also aligns with other large initiatives, facilitating benchmarking and amplifying the impact of sustainability strategies, addressing interconnected challenges and leveraging expertise and best practices.

CDP in 2023

Developments in 2023 reflect CDP’s strategic priorities to track organisations’ alignment with a 1.5°C world, which include enhancing disclosure, governance, engagement, emissions accounting, carbon credits and carbon pricing.

Respondents are asked whether their spending and revenue is aligned with sustainable finance taxonomies to add credibility to their commitment to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

In alignment with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Corporate Reporting on Biodiversity Guidelines, respondents are required to report on the approach to maintaining and addressing concerns associated with having activities located in or near biodiversity-sensitive areas.

Respondents are also requested to provide emissions data for subsidiaries, which includes a breakdown of their Scopes 1 and 2. As other regulatory frameworks and standards increase their scrutiny around emissions reporting, organisations are encouraged to consider subsidiary emissions, which can represent a significant gap in terms of unassessed climate risks and opportunities.

Conclusion

CDP has emerged as a vital catalyst in the fight against climate change. CDP is transforming corporate behaviour, empowering organisations to embrace sustainability practices and mitigating the adverse effects of climate change.

For end-to-end support with your CDP submission or other ESG ratings or disclosures, contact us or request a call back.

Author: Maria Serrano, Climate and Carbon Consultant

1 www.cdp.net
2 https://cdn.cdp.net/cdp-production

ESG and sustainability strategy

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and sustainability strategies in businesses have changed radically in the last 5 years. With the increase in stakeholder expectations, companies are now finding their strategies are not meeting current requirements and are needing an update.

In the past, sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategies were considered an addition, a bolt-on to a business’s commercial strategy. In recent years, there has been a significant acknowledgement by stakeholders, regulators and the financial sector of the direct and indirect financial impact of ESG and sustainability and issues. This has been set out in the recent European Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) and Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).

Businesses are now looking to ensure their ESG and sustainability strategies are entirely intertwined with their commercial strategies and to maximise commercial opportunities and minimise financial and stakeholder risk. This often means using the old-fashioned approach of focus areas being people, planet, community – a box-ticking exercise – is now too simplistic. Rather companies are now developing strategies which are more sophisticated, tailored and refined to their specific needs, with a focus on the financial opportunities and alignment to the commercial strategy.

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Reporting for a new era

Simply Sustainable has been providing best practice guidance in ESG and sustainability reporting for over 12 years. We predict that 2023 will be the year that robust and credible nonfinancial reporting becomes the expected norm for global business.

In short, this is down to new Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and sustainability reporting requirements in the United Kingdom, the European Union and the United States that are set to fundamentally change the nonfinancial reporting landscape.

The Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) is a new set of EU rules that will require ESG reporting on a level never seen before, capturing a whole host of companies that previously were not subject to mandatory nonfinancial reporting requirements, including public and private non-EU companies that meet certain EU-presence thresholds.

For US issuers, the new EU rules will result in mandatory reporting on a broader set of ESG topics than those required under current and proposed Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules. It is important that the business community does not ignore the approaching tide of regulation on sustainability reporting that could entail significant financial and reputational damage if overlooked.

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Simply Sustainable’s Amsterdam office kicked off 2023 with our first sustainability leaders’ roundtable meeting. The lively discussion addressed the sustainability issues that will affect businesses in Europe in 2023. We saw extensive exchange of views and experiences between peers, looking forward to a year of empowerment and change. 

Sustainability Manager is a 360-degree role

The enormous momentum behind sustainability is only expected to build further in 2023. There is an increasing demand on sustainability managers to provide practical solutions. Participants told us that many colleagues – especially those from the younger generation – come to the sustainability manager proactively with ideas (big or small) and then wish to be part of the transition, as well as board members fighting to have a piece of sustainability in their remit. 

This is great news. However, in many organisations, the interest and urgency of sustainability surpasses maturity and capacity. 

This imbalance is most acutely felt by sustainability managers. Theirs is becoming a 360-degree role, in which they are expected to communicate and manage to colleagues upwards, sideways and downwards, and manage stakeholders all around the business. They must work strategically as well as operationally to realise their agenda. All while the scope of their work is broadening, beyond the traditional focus on environmental issues to include social and governance topics.  

Why the CSRD is sexy

The EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) has made it much easier for sustainability managers to engage people in the organisation on sustainability. Timelines for compliance are short, and the bar is high, so many in the company recognise that preparation must start today. 

Participants see that colleagues are looking to them, as the sustainability manager, to translate the complexity of the CSRD into a clear, step-by-step plan for the business.  

We talked about the challenges of involving and empowering internal stakeholders in the short time span for CSRD compliance. Companies run the risk of going down a narrow route to compliance, missing the value that CSRD preparation can have for future-proofing the sustainability strategy. If full focus is on gathering the data for reporting, opportunities to engage in dialogue about the strategic implications of sustainability topics and how they are best addressed may fall by the wayside.  

Sustainability data is management information

Preparation for CSRD accelerates the need for comprehensive and robust measurement. While new regulatory guidelines clarify what should be measured – previously companies had to find this out for themselves – it does not make data collection and validation any easier.  

Many companies have been looking for the best system for capturing and managing sustainability data. Should they choose a new Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) tool – of which there are increasingly many available? Can the financial reporting system be extended to include sustainability data? Or are there tried and tested Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) systems that are expanding into this space? There are many solutions out there, but companies find it very hard to judge which are robust and trustworthy. 

As a widely experienced sustainability consultancy, it is our view that sustainability data should be management information and not only be used for reporting. This points to an integrated solution, that brings together financial and non-financial data for informed and balanced decision making. There is a huge need, and we are actively watching this fast-moving space to best advise our clients.

Author: Sytze Dijkstra, Netherlands Country Manager, Simply Sustainable

Download Simply Sustainable’s 2023 ESG & Sustainability Trend report for an in-depth analysis of how sustainability will shape the corporate agenda this year.  

If you are interested in receiving our reports or joining a future Sustainability Leaders’ roundtable, please contact us. 

The Importance of Solidarity and Collaboration in the Face of Adversity

The World Economic Forum (WEF) hosted its 53rd Annual Meeting last week from the 16-20 January 2023 in Davos, Switzerland. Cultural, business, political and other leaders of society convened at the conference to discuss actions needed to resolve current global crises, from the cost-of-living crisis to climate change, but also how to prevent the reoccurrence of these issues.

The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2023

Founded in 1971 and headquartered in Geneva, the WEF is committed to promoting sustainable development worldwide1. Given the many environmental, social and economic emergencies the world currently faces, this year’s meeting sought to reaffirm the importance of public-private cooperation to address these problems, as well as facilitate positive, long-term systemic change. Consequently, at the heart of the meeting, there was a desire to find ways to reinstitute a collective sense of agency and to turn defensive measures into proactive, vision-driven policies and business strategies. Key heads of state and government, as well as different geopolitical and geoeconomic groups (e.g. the Country Strategy Dialogues), contributed to discussions over the course of the four-day meeting; the WEF’s foremost business communities, such as the International Business Council and the Community of Chairpersons, also gathered to engage in discussion with their peers2.

The backdrop to the 53rd Annual Meeting: the WEF Global Risks Report 2023

The WEF Global Risks Report 2023 was published in January 2023 and highlights the different areas where the world is at a critical inflection point. In its 18th edition, the results of a Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS) are presented, which collected responses from over 1,200 experts across academia, business, civil society, government and the international community on the evolving global risks landscape in the short-term (two years) and long-term (10 years). Complementing GRPS data on global risks, the report also draws on the WEF’s Executive Opinion Survey (EOS) to identify risks that pose the most severe threat to each country over the next two years, as revealed by over 12,000 business leaders in 121 economies3.

The report revealed that energy, food, inflation and the cost-of-living crisis are considered to be the most significant global risks. The cost-of-living crisis has been ranked as the most severe global risk over the next two years, followed by natural disasters and trade and technology wars. However, failure to mitigate and adapt to climate change were ranked as the two most pressing risks over the next 10 years, with biodiversity loss and ecosystem collapse regarded as one of the most rapidly escalating global risks in the long-term. Geoeconomic confrontation, cyber insecurity, widespread cybercrime, large-scale involuntary migration and the erosion of social cohesion and societal polarisation are global risks that all feature in the top 10 over the next decade3.

World Economic Forum Global Risks Report 2023 Source: World Economic Forum

A call for urgent and collective action

Despite the range of risks that are occurring simultaneously worldwide, a shift away from a focus on short-term results (i.e. “short-termism”), crises-driven mindsets and solo approaches is a strong step to effectively manage and limit their consequences. The WEF has identified four key principles that are crucial to prevent a worsening of the risks outlook3,4:

  1. Although risks may have short- and long-term impacts, leaders must revaluate their perception of risk and act in the shortest timeframe possible (i.e. today) to address them. In today’s risk landscape, this means leaders must collaborate now to address climate and socioeconomic issues.

  2. There is a need for business and governments to invest in multi-domain, cross-sector risk preparedness by building societal resilience through financial inclusion, health, care, education, and climate-resilient infrastructure.

  3. The abundance of crises affecting humanity and the environment has caused nations to operate in a more insular manner. Despite the importance of national preparedness, there is a fundamental need for international coordination, data sharing and knowledge exchange to deal with several global risks, such as technology governance and climate change.

  4. Accurate predictions of risk in terms of timescale and impact must be bolstered at a global, national and institutional level. To strengthen the ability of leaders to better understand global risks, scenario analyses, scanning multistakeholder perceptions, appointing a risks officer function, and finding data on weak signals are all valuable ways to aid leaders in this process.

What does this mean for our future?

The world is facing several sustainability challenges that present an immediate threat to humanity and nature3. Given the scale, complexity and urgency with which they need to be addressed, pessimism and a feeling of futility abounds. Nevertheless, it was clear from the WEF’s 53rd Annual Meeting that international cooperation, holistic approaches and solidarity are key to tackling and preventing sustainability crises.

Bold leadership and cohesion across country borders is needed to improve the state of the world. If we all work together now, there is good reason to feel hopeful and optimistic about the future.

Author: James Beiny, Consultant at Simply Sustainable

1. https://www.weforum.org/about/world-economic-forum
2. https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting-2023/about/meeting-overview
3. https://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Global_Risks_Report_2023.pdf
4. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2023/01/davos-2023-global-risks-report-how-to-solve-the-world-s-biggest-crises/

Simply Sustainable’s ESG and Sustainability Trend Report for 2023

At Simply Sustainable, we understand that sustainable growth is the only way to build a prosperous business that has a lasting positive impact on our environment and society.

The past few years have been pivotal for the ESG and sustainability revolution. It continues to be an area of focus for stakeholders at all levels – investors, regulators, businesses and consumers – despite the current backdrop of a turbulent economy and cost of living crisis.

In 2022, we saw a rise in important conversations and the development of global regulation aimed at improving sustainability, particularly across ESG and sustainability reporting and greenwashing.

The key sustainability trends for 2023, across various sectors, will remain focused on the credibility of claims and robust disclosure and reporting.

In addition, there will be greater attention on carbon reduction, a strategic focus on understanding what the transition to a low carbon economy means for business and its stakeholders, as well as moving away from using carbon offsets as a credible means to decarbonise.

Regulators have been exercising greater scrutiny of corporate sustainability efforts, fuelled by concerns that companies and asset managers may be using disclosures and sustainability-related labels on products and services as a marketing tool to appear more proactive on ESG issues than they truly are.

Complete the form below to read the full in-depth report from our Thought Leadership team:

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Beyond reporting: How companies can use the CSRD as an accelerator of their sustainability agenda

The future of corporate sustainability reporting is taking shape. At the end of November 2022, the European Union Council gave its final approval to the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD)1 and the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group delivered the first set of draft European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) to the European Commission.2 With these measures, the EU aims to accelerate the transition to a sustainable economy.

Under the new CSRD regulation, companies will soon be required to publish detailed information on sustainability matters. This will increase a company’s accountability for its impacts on the environment and society, and provide financial institutions with comparable, verified information on sustainability performance that should facilitate allocation of finance to sustainable activities.

The measures should also equip companies for implementing their own sustainability agenda. They can only make progress if they know where they stand – relative to their ambitions as well as their peers – and where they can improve.

What does CSRD compliance entail?

CSRD extends the scope and detail of the current Non-Financial Reporting Directive (NFRD). It will apply to all large EU and non-EU companies (listed and non-listed) operating within the EU market.3 Companies subject to CSRD will need to:

  • Disclose principal actual or potential impacts related to the company’s own operations and the implementation and outcome of the due diligence process of the company’s value chain
  • Describe the role of management boards and supervisory boards regarding sustainability matters
  • Disclose set time-bound targets on sustainability matters and report on the progress of achieving such targets (KPIs)
  • Assess and report both impacts of the company’s activities on sustainability matters and on sustainability matters affecting the company (the double-materiality principle)
  • Obtain limited assurance opinion by a statutory auditor of reported sustainability information.

However, CSRD is about much more than just reporting

Preparing for CSRD compliance will force companies to revisit their strategic focus and bring a greater systematic approach to corporate sustainability, using common standards and frameworks. The required double-materiality assessment, for instance, can identify important topics that have previously been overlooked in corporate strategy and risk management. Target setting, as prescribed by the regulation, often kicks-off a process of redesigning performance management, defining new KPIs and setting up new systems and processes for measuring and monitoring progress.

CSRD compliance is a multi-year journey

Companies need to start planning their journey to becoming fully compliant by the time the Directive is mandatory to them, ranging from between 2024 to 2026. That may appear like a lot of time, however getting all the required elements in place will be a significant exercise for many companies.

Fortunately, many elements of the CSRD build on existing standards, including the GRI framework and the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations, and there is an increasing body of experience of how to apply these robustly.

Even with existing guidance, much of the detail is still to be defined. Experience suggests that general, cross-industry standards need industry-specific guidance to account for sectoral differences.

Assessing the impacts of business activity will be very different in sectors where assets are mostly intangible, in comparison to in an industry that has substantial tangible assets. Appropriate governance structures in highly competitive industries may not be suitable for regulated industries. There is also a steep learning curve in creating standards for linking sustainability performance metrics to accounting metrics like CAPEX, OPEX and turnover, as prescribed by the EU Taxonomy.

Figuring all of this out will take time and close collaboration between companies and regulators, value-chain partners and industry bodies. It will get easier as practice builds, with companies benefiting from the learning experience of early adopters.

An historic opportunity

CSRD will be challenging to implement at pace within corporations and across value chains. It is also an historic opportunity to lean-in and tool-up for a more sustainable future.

Importantly, companies should look beyond regulatory compliance when preparing for CSRD. Next to gathering information for providing accountability externally, companies must create decision-ready data that guides a shift in corporate practices, and in turn delivers real-world impact.

What does this mean in practice?

  • The assessment of material sustainability issues, risks and opportunities is fully integrated into business strategy and risk management processes, and is not a paper exercise for reporting purposes only
  • Targets come with execution plans that lay out the journey of meeting them, in realistic, practical steps
  • Communication internally to employees is as important as communication to external stakeholders. Employees are the primary agents that will deliver sustainable business in practice, and many are eager to do so.

Approached with this mindset, preparation for CSRD can be an accelerator for delivering corporate sustainability goals, rather than a time-consuming distraction. Done correctly, it will help large companies secure the long-term resilience of their business and of the environment that it depends on.

How Simply Sustainable can help

Our growing team of expert sustainability and ESG consultants are here to enable your company to adapt at pace to the changing landscape of sustainability legislation and transformational plans towards our shared goal of net-zero.

Book a call back to discuss your strategy here

 

1. www.consilium.europa.eu/council-gives-final-green-light-to-corporate-sustainability-reporting-directive
2. www.onetrust.com/efrag-eu-sustainability-reporting-standards
3. A company is considered ‘large’ and subject to the CSRD if it meets two out of three criteria: (1) revenue over EUR 40 million; (2) total assets over EUR 20 million; (3) more than 250 employees.

The 15th Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) aims to agree on a post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework with targets for nature over the next decade. The first session took place virtually in October 2021, resulting in the Kunming Declaration, which lays down a commitment to reverse biodiversity loss by 2030. The concluding session kicked off on 7 December 2022 in Montreal and has the potential to be the Paris Agreement for Nature, setting the agenda for change.

Convention on Biological Diversity

The CBD is a landmark treaty established at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit. To date, 196 UN member states have ratified the convention and helped biological diversity gain recognition as a global asset1. The CBD has three key objectives: conserve biological diversity, ensure sustainable use and uphold the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits.

Every two years, member states meet to discuss progress against these objectives. At the tenth conference (COP10), the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity (2011-2020) was developed, with the flagship Aichi targets. The Aichi targets had five core objectives supported by twenty targets to reduce biodiversity decline and address the underlying causes. Of those targets, none were fully achieved and only six were partially achieved2.

Although the world failed to meet previous targets, there are lessons to be learnt, and a foundation for the development of a new robust Paris Agreement for Nature has been set.

What does COP15 mean for businesses?

Wildlife populations have plummeted by 69% on average since 19703. Biodiversity is a fundamental component to long-term business survival. Nearly all sectors are affected by and rely upon ecosystem services for critical inputs and depend on healthy ecosystems to maintain soil and water quality. Over half of the global GDP, $44 trillion, is estimated to be threatened by nature loss.

The first draft of the post-2020 biodiversity framework includes 22 targets4. Target 15 expects all businesses and financial institutions to assess and report their dependencies and impacts on biodiversity, reduce negative impacts by at least half, and increase positive impacts5. This is to reduce risk and move towards more sustainable business models and practices.

It is anticipated that the forthcoming Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) will facilitate the implementation of this target. Like the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), there is potential for governments to make nature disclosure mandatory and there is a building case6.

The #MakeItMandatory campaign brings together more than 300 companies calling on governments to make the disclosure of nature impacts and dependencies mandatory for large businesses and financial institutions7. The motivation for this is the increasing financial risk resulting from the dependency on nature for operations, changing consumer demands and legal action from regulatory change. But beyond risk management also lies vast opportunities for businesses and the finance sector. Mandatory nature reporting has the potential to engage investors, empower consumers and, most importantly, accelerate action. Evidence has shown that disclosure generates business action and is the bedrock of environmental action.

COP15 and beyond

COP15 is a significant moment for global environmental protection and will mark the start of a decade of action. It is crucial that key decision-makers use the failures of the Aichi targets to ensure history does not repeat itself and that the new framework is inclusive of all stakeholders. If we fail to stop the decline of biodiversity, it will have severe consequences for our global systems. The challenge of halting loss can feel insurmountable, but our fate is not yet sealed.

Author: Lauren Hyatt, Consultant at Simply Sustainable.

1. https://www.cbd.int/information/parties.shtml
2. https://www.cbd.int/gbo/gbo5/publication/gbo-5-en.pdf
3. https://livingplanet.panda.org/en-GB/
4. https://www.cbd.int/doc/c/abb5/591f/2e46096d3f0330b08ce87a45/wg2020-03-03-en.pdf
5. https://www.cbd.int/doc/c/abb5/591f/2e46096d3f0330b08ce87a45/wg2020-03-03-en.pdf
6. https://framework.tnfd.global/
7. https://www.businessfornature.org/make-it-mandatory-campaign

Today, it is now widely acknowledged that companies cannot tackle the climate and nature crises without bold action. The arrival and ongoing development of corporate science-based targets (those in line with the ambition to keep global temperature increase below 2°C and ideally to 1.5°C above pre-industrial temperatures) has crucially set the minimum standard for climate action. Despite this, a significant quantity of greenhouse gas emissions still remain outside of companies value chains, presenting the need for companies to drive net-zero beyond the company boundary.

At Simply Sustainable, we help companies to deliver socially inclusive decarbonisation actions, mitigation measures and investments to avoid, reduce and then remove greenhouse gases that fall outside of the company’s direct value chain. This is referred to as ‘beyond value chain mitigation’. Importantly, such actions play a key role in reducing the emissions gap between today and our global net-zero target date of 2050.

At present however, there is an absence of clear industry guidance on beyond value chain mitigation. The SBTi (Science Based Targets initiative) for instance, is anticipated to release further guidance in 2023 whilst sector specific methodologies are underway. In the meantime, companies must pursue credible mitigation efforts to ensure a chance of achieving global net-zero in-line with the Paris Agreement.

To deliver credible beyond value chain mitigation, companies must consider near-term and long-term targets, align to the wider company strategy and values, and consider innovation and knowledge gaps in the achievement of net-zero. Additionally, such measures should be monitored and reported at least annually with minimum expectations to disclose the nature and scale of involvement, monetary contribution and value realised.

Here’s just a few examples of how we can support beyond value chain mitigation for your company:

  • Delivering credible, socially inclusive net-zero strategies (with beyond value chain mitigation)
  • Conducting just transition assessments to understand opportunity areas for socially inclusive partnerships to deliver net-zero
  • Advisory on carbon offsetting and the purchase of high-quality, jurisdictional carbon credits (including nature-based solutions)
  • Driving climate finance by setting an internal price of carbon and calculating the social cost of carbon of your business
  • Developing research and development plans and opportunity metrics and targets for new climate solutions
  • Assessing and improving climate skills, training and education to deliver decent and green jobs, education, skills, training and re-training for all.

By considering beyond value chain mitigation with foundational principles of social inclusion, fairness and equity, we can support companies to ensure no one is left behind as we strive towards net-zero. Ultimately, we can and must work together to collaborate and partner to deliver co-benefits for nature and people.

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