Race to Zero clarifications

By Climate Champions | September 16, 2022

The Race to Zero campaign rallies non-state actors who voluntarily commit to following the science to halve global emissions this decade and achieve net zero as soon as possible, and by mid-century at the latest. It is advised by an independent group of Experts (the Expert Peer Review Group), which draws on public consultations involving over 200 academics, scientists and practitioners.

It has been brought to our attention that there may be cause for legal concern with text in the Expert Peer Review Group’s Interpretation Guide, which accompanies the campaign’s Criteria. We therefore want to reaffirm key elements of the Criteria (last updated on 15 June):

  • Partner initiatives and their Member organizations are – and have always been – required to align to 1.5°C scenarios
  • There is an explicit requirement to phase down and out unabated fossil fuels, including coal
  • It is the responsibility of each Partner to ensure that their individual Members are aligned with the Race to Zero minimum criteria

The Expert Peer Review Group has also made two updates to the Interpretation Guide text, which emphasise the requirement of Members to independently find their own route to this 1.5°C-aligned goal, following the most appropriate science-based pathway.

Work is underway to strengthen the compliance mechanisms and accountability frameworks across the Race to Zero campaign, in close collaboration with all Partner initiatives. Further details to come soon.

Ultimately, there is a need to accelerate the regulatory and policy changes necessary for a 1.5°C future, and to continue setting the highest standards of integrity for voluntary climate action. We look forward to continue working with all relevant stakeholders to achieve this.

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