The CDP Science-Based Targets (SBTs) Campaign offers CDP investor signatories the opportunity to play a key role in accelerating the adoption of science-based climate targets in the corporate sector, by collaboratively engaging companies on this matter.
This unique campaign builds on CDP’s tried and tested collective engagement mechanism – and our experience as one of the founding partners of the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – to accelerate the adoption of science-based targets in the corporate sector.
In driving the adoption of science-based emission reduction targets, investors can decarbonize their portfolios and mitigate climate-related risks to which they may be exposed.
Global carbon emissions need to reach net-zero by 2050 at the latest to limit warming to 1.5°C, as stipulated in the Paris Agreement. Science-based targets provide companies with a roadmap for reducing their emissions at the pace and scale that the science tells us is necessary for a 1.5°C world.
The model of the campaign is simple.
The campaign and its purpose are well aligned with our own work with climate-related risks and opportunities. To remain an attractive investment, it is essential that a company develops a climate strategy that aligns with the objectives of the Paris agreement.Sandra Metoyer, Head of Responsible Investments AP Pension
|May – June 30, 2021||Investor sign-up|
|September 2021||Company outreach and CDP press release|
|September 2021 – September 2022||Company engagement and commitment period
|February 2022||Release of CDP SBT campaign mid-term report (download 2020 report here)|
We launched this campaign with a webinar on Tuesday May 18, where we introduced stakeholders to the Science Based Targets initiative’s Business Ambition for 1.5°C, presented the CDP SBT campaign, and held a Q&A session.
To support the engagement efforts of the campaign and amplify its impact, CDP will announce details to press later in 2021. The materials from our previous 2020 campaign are available here.
List of participating financial institutions as of 02 August 2021
For more information or to get involved, please email: [email protected]
Which companies will be contacted?
The campaign will target the most climate-relevant companies within the global investable market. CDP has carefully curated this sample with the MSCI ACWI Index as a starting point, and applied a number of filters to ensure maximum impact and relevance, both from the climate and investment perspectives. See our methodology for more detail.
|Total number of companies||Total market cap||Total GHG emissions (Scope 1,2,3)||% of MSCI ACWI coverage|
|CDP High Impact SBTs Campaign sample||1,616||$ 40 722 billion||50.4 GT||35% (1012) of MSCI ACWI|
Can investors choose which companies they engage with in this campaign?
No. To harness the power of this collective engagement and make this campaign more accessible to our signatories, CDP and the SBTi have identified the most climate-relevant companies, and will contact these on behalf of investors. Feel free to provide us feedback here.
How do investors take part in this campaign?
Simply fill in this sign up form by June 30, 2021.
How much work does this entail for investors?
We have set this campaign up to be as accessible as possible for our investor signatories. All signatories need to do is sign up to the campaign, and CDP and SBTi will take care of the rest. Of course, it is always helpful to engage directly with companies on this topic as well, but that can be done at the discretion of each participating investor. To support direct corporate engagement by investors, an engagement tracker on Excel is available from the CDP Dashboard. The tracker contains recommended messaging, SBTi status and is also useful to track the progress of the campaign.
Can all investors take part in this campaign?
To support this campaign, you simply need to be a CDP investor signatory. If you are not yet, find out how to become a signatory.
How long will the campaign last?
This campaign will run from September 2021 until September 2022 and is then expected to run annually.
How is this different from other investor engagement initiatives in the market?
This campaign is the only collaborative engagement allowing a global network of financial institutions to ask hundreds of high-impact companies to set a science-based target. The 2021 campaign is the second year CDP has run this first-of-its-kind campaign.
Can I see the letters sent to companies with my signature?
Yes – you can view the three different letters that have been developed for companies tailored to their circumstances:
How is this different from CDP’s other investor engagement like the annual disclosure cycle or the Non-Disclosure Campaign?
CDP’s annual disclosure campaign, supported by all CDP signatories, invites companies to disclose their environmental data.
The Non-Disclosure Campaign (optional for signatories) allows investors to target specific companies that have not responded to CDP’s disclosure request in the previous year.
This SBTs Engagement Campaign (optional for signatories) allows investors to accelerate more ambitious corporate action by specifically asking companies to set a science-based target (SBT).
How will the success of the campaign be measured?
Although it is difficult to attribute a company joining the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) by companies to one factor only, the success of this campaign will be assessed by looking at how many of the targets companies joined the SBTi during the time of the campaign. We will release a full one-year impact campaign next year.
Given the current economic uncertainty, is there any pushback from businesses over the difficulty of setting long-term goals in this environment?
We understand and fully empathize with the many that will be finding these extraordinary times difficult. Through our own work, we are seeing positive signs that businesses and investors have not lost sight of the importance of mitigating and managing their own impact to avoid the potentially disastrous economic and human losses linked to the climate crisis.
How do companies benefit from setting science-based targets?
Over 1700 companies have joined the Science Based Targets initiative and half of these companies already have approved science-based emissions reduction targets in place. SBTs present global best practice in emissions target-setting and it makes business sense – it future-proofs growth, saves money, provides resilience against regulation, boosts investor confidence, spurs innovation and competitiveness – while also demonstrating concrete sustainability commitments to stakeholders. To find out more, visit the Science Based Targets initiative website.
How will CDP support companies in setting science-based targets?
Companies contacted as part of this campaign are provided with useful links to tools and resources, and are invited to contact their local CDP office to receive further support in joining the Science Based Targets initiative.
Which financial institutions backed the campaign last year?
The full list of financial institutions which supported last year's campaign is published here.