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New net zero supply chain initiative launched

Published September 30, 2020

New net zero supply chain initiative launched

A number of multinational corporations have come together to launch a new net zero initiative aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and aligning with the Paris Agreement across corporate supply chains.

The 1.5°C Supply Chain Leaders initiative counts Ikea, BT, Unilever, Ericsson, and Telia among its founding members.

The initiative was announced at New York Climate Week as an off-shoot from the Exponential Roadmap Initiative (ERI) and part of the pre-COP26 Race to Zero campaign.

The 1.5°C Supply Chain Leaders have made several commitments, which include:

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions across their value chains in line with the 1.5°C ambition, which includes integrating climate in their business strategies and driving climate action as part of their wider role in society
  • Working together with suppliers and business partners to join them on this journey by taking action aiming to halve greenhouse gas emissions before 2030, reaching net-zero before 2050 and communicating progress annually.
  • Supporting SMEs globally through the SME Climate Hub with tools, knowledge and best practice for implementing a robust climate strategy.

“Aligning purchasing criteria with climate-related goals has the effect of driving action on emissions throughout the supply chain. If SMEs are also supported in their emissions reductions by the larger companies they supply, this will help to ease their decarbonisation process,” said Nikki Wilson, Carbon Compliance Manager at Alfa Energy Group.

In the long run, the initiative’s goal is to help other businesses set and achieve their own targets. To help with this, the ERI has also launched the SME Climate Hub to provide information and tools on lowering emissions to SME businesses. With the brunt of the focus on large corporations’ emissions reductions, the hub will shed a light on smaller companies that also see the importance of setting climate goals and inspire others to engage. It will allow for the sharing of information between the smaller businesses and the larger corporate founders, as well as enabling suppliers to register for government incentive schemes.

Given that supply chain emissions often far outweigh those of operations, this initiative is addressing an arguably more impactful facet of carbon emissions.

For more on the challenges businesses face on the road to decarbonisation, check out Chapter 2.2: Businesses and Decarbonisation: The Challenge Ahead.