First guidance for companies to tackle nature crisis in line with science

Science Based Targets Network, which is part of the Global Commons Alliance

has published a guide showing businesses how to protect and restore nature in accordance with science, preparing to set science-based targets. The guide explains how companies can assess, prioritize, measure, address and track their impacts and dependencies on nature in line with science, on land and freshwater use, climate impact, and ecosystem integrity.

While a growing number of companies have been taking action for nature, they have been increasingly calling for science-based targets for nature to ensure they are doing their part in the same way as they can by adopting science-based targets for climate. 

The interim targets provided in the guidance give companies direction they can align with now, across land use, freshwater use, climate impact, and ecosystem integrity.

The new guidance consolidates and builds on multiple existing efforts companies are making to protect nature. It is an interim publication with the goal being to engage with businesses to develop and refine it for maximum useability. Reviewers included representatives from 14 companies with a combined market cap of $1.1 trillion, including Sky, Kering and Unilever along with other environmental, academic and scientific experts.   

The broad membership of the Network itself – 45+ partners – illustrates a widespread agreement among environmental organizations, business groups and scientists on the need for a single, unified message for business to provide clarity on how to ensure efforts are scientifically validated. They are identifying a safe corridor for humanity based on the first ever integrated assessment of the whole Earth system now underway by the Earth Commission. 

“Harnessing the power of the private sector to innovate, develop and scale solutions is an essential part of securing a safe and just future for humanity. Companies need this guidance to understand how much is ‘at least enough’ action to ensure they play their part. We urge companies to start following the guidance and to work with us to develop and improve it even further. Alongside the benefits to nature, companies acting for nature can experience benefits like more secure supply chains, increased innovation and strengthened customer, employee and investor confidence.”

“We urgently need to restore to health our life support systems – the Earth’s biodiversity, land, ocean and water. Without this we cannot halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Business has a key role to play. This guidance will ensure they are acting in line with science and ensure that any nature-based solutions they are considering alongside their emissions reduction efforts are implemented in a way that maximizes the benefits for nature, communities and climate.”

“The best companies in the world are no longer satisfied with “doing better”. They insist on “doing enough”. That’s what science-based targets provide them. Nearly 1000 top companies are committed to science-based targets for greenhouse gas emissions. Now they will be able to address issues of water, land, the ocean and biodiversity with the same rigor and accountability. WRI is delighted to be a founding partner of this effort to accelerate action and drive systemic change with benefits for people and nature.”

Download the first guidance for business to help you get started on your journey to setting nature science-based targets. Send an email  when you’ve completed step 1 to track private sector progress:

SBTN Guidance Launch Event video

SBTN Guidance Launch Event video

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