Low Carbon Pledge annual report launched

4th Annual Report outlines an increase in Low Carbon pledge signatories

Low Carbon Pledge Annual report released today: Ireland’s largest businesses are making steady progress on meeting net zero targets for greenhouse gas emissions. 

70 businesses, including Veolia Ireland, have signed the BITC Ireland Low Carbon Pledge to bring about a sustainable, low carbon economy and a more inclusive society where everyone thrives. The year’s annual report demonstrates the collective progress made on our low carbon journey:

  • 70% of the Pledge Signatories are well progressed to setting Science-Based Targets (SBTs) by 2024, with the majority set to achieve their SBTs by 2030 or earlier.
  • 66% have set a public net zero target, up from 42% last year, with the biggest challenge being cost.
  • Just over a quarter (26%) of respondents in the Low Carbon Pledge report have set their scope 1 and 2 net zero ambitions to 2030 or earlier; just 12% have set this for scope 3 emissions.

The report also emphasises a rise in the number of companies addressing climate change through decarbonisation. Indeed, in 2019, when the Low Carbon Pledge was launched, only 47 Irish businesses signed. Today the BITC Low Carbon pledge has reached 70 signatures. 

Veolia is proud to be involved in this project from the beginning both as a signatory of the pledge and as a member of the Low Carbon subgroup. We are pleased to see more organisations joining us in our commitment to create a low carbon future and fight climate change.

The fourth Low Carbon Pledge Annual Report was published today by Business in the Community Ireland sharing our steady progress as a collective, driving the urgency and the ambition needed as we work towards the achievement of our short and long-term climate goals
Sinéad Patton
Chief Financial and Commercial Officer, Veolia Ireland and Regional Director, Veolia Northern Ireland

Other key findings from the report highlighting our accountability and our continued commitment to decarbonisation include:

  • 42% of Pledge Signatories confirmed that business model resilience was the main driver for signing the Low Carbon Pledge. Reputation followed closely (23%). Other drivers included: stakeholder pressure, corporate and social responsibility and policy and regulation. Some cited signing up because it was simply the right thing to do.
  • Very significantly, 66% of the Pledge Signatories have set a public net zero target, up from 42% last year. 
  • The biggest challenge to setting a net zero target, according to the Signatories, is ‘Cost’ (29%) followed by ‘Lack of technology’ (26%) and ‘No analysis done’ (23%).
  • 35% of Signatories are making use of carbon offsets. 
  • Over four out of five (81%) of the Signatory companies publicly report non-financial data. 70% of this year’s Signatories received external verification of their emissions data, up from 65% last year. 

The scientific community has used every possible opportunity to warn us of the irreversible changes we are causing to the planet and our livelihoods. That is why our targets must be based on science. We are making steady progress towards our ambition to have science-based emission reduction targets set no later than 2024. This is a mission we cannot afford to fail and we cannot leave anyone behind. Business must act and business must lead.
Tomás Sercovich
CEO Business in the Community Ireland
Follow the launch of the Low Carbon Pledge report on our LinkedIn account for more information and updates.