2019 was the year that net-zero began to gain momentum. The UK became the first major economy to set a legally binding target of net-zero by 2050, and was swiftly followed by many others including France, Japan and Sweden.
Meanwhile, various global cities are locked in a race to become the first carbon-neutral city, and hundreds of businesses have committed to achieving net-zero by 2030 or earlier. We even saw CEOs challenging their counterparts to demonstrate climate leadership by pursuing net-zero.
But this begs the questions - what does net zero mean, how is it achieved and where do you start?
Net zero: a daunting prospect?
Put simply net zero (often used interchangeably with carbon-neutral) can be understood to mean that any emissions emitted are balanced by the absorption of equivalent amount of emissions from the atmosphere.
There are various ways in which you can remove carbon from the atmosphere to balance your emissions, including both nature-based solutions (e.g. through forest restoration) and technological approaches (e.g. direct air capture and storage). Whilst technical barriers remain to rolling out these measures at scale, carbon offsets allow businesses to achieve net zero in the short term.
Sounds simple enough, but with a proliferation of standards and methodologies and given that many organisations have limited influence over scope 3 emissions, the prospect of achieving net zero can feel daunting.
Our approach to net-zero is bespoke, robust and credible
We have worked with several clients over the past few years to achieve net-zero emissions. We’ve designed a simple approach, aligned with PAS 2060 - the leading global standard for net-zero – that helps businesses to:
Establish a robust carbon footprint baseline
Reduce emissions by identifying and implementing carbon reduction activities,
Offset residual emissions
Validate and communicate success with stakeholders:
The pursuit of net zero emissions should, of course, fit into a broader sustainability strategy and be complemented by credible reduction targets. Ultimately we’ll work with you to achieve net zero in a robust, credible manner, tailored to your organisation.
The future is net zero, we can help you get there
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I was impressed with the thoroughness and level of detail that our data set was analysed in. Presenting an extensive data set in an easy to use format was of great value in communicating the outcome of the work internally, and prioritising areas of the supply chain for future action.
Alan Sweeting, Global Health, Safety and Environment Senior Manager, Allen & Overy LLP
Avieco supported us in collating and organising data to develop a robust risk assessment process. They have been easy to work with, responsive to our requirements and pragmatic in their solutions.
Gijs Voskuilen, Head of Corporate Responsibility, Bunzl
Avieco has been the preferred environmental consultant since the beginning of our journey to become a sustainable company. Dentsu Aegis has worked with Avieco’s experts on various areas, such as carbon footprint reporting and assurance support, and recently also advised us how to switch our global network to renewable electricity. The team’s expertise on environmental sustainability is impressive, and the work delivered is always of highest standard.
Lars Holm, Global Senior Manager CSR, Dentsu Aegis Network
Avieco informatively led us through the processes needed to reduce our carbon footprint. With their clear and concise advice we have been able to effectively reduce our energy and waste levels. Avieco made the complex notion of energy efficiency into a manageable and achievable reality
Nigel Pink, Group Engineering Manager, Dominos UK & Ireland Ltd
Avieco delivered exactly the workshop we needed to get our sustainability team and regional leads on the same page when it comes to ‘market-based’ reporting. It’s a challenging area to tackle for a global business – particularly when we operate in a number of markets where there is little or no choice in terms of energy purchasing. Avieco has given us the knowledge and tools to ensure we get our disclosures right – they really exceeded my expectations for what we could achieve in one afternoon!
Dr Julia Rowe, Group Sustainability Advisor, Johnson Matthey
We get that change is not easy. But we must be brave, challenge old ways, set new habits, embrace new thinking.
we get it.