Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Net Zero Strategy: How to Achieve Net Zero Emissions by 2050 - Anthesis

Achieving Net Zero

Join Anthesis in the race to zero carbon. Our strategic framework supports organisations on their journey to reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions in buildings, operations and supply chains for a Net Zero future

What is Net Zero?

According to the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi), “Net Zero emissions are achieved when anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere are balanced by anthropogenic removals over a specified period.”

Find out more about SBTs

Net Zero: why is it essential?

In response to meet the ambitious, yet essential, global warming target of 1.5°C set out in the Paris Agreement, reducing carbon emissions alone is not sufficient. In December 2019, the UN announced that going beyond that temperature will most certainly lead to catastrophic disaster.

We need to go one step further in order to halt the climate emergency. Therefore, a Net Zero emissions future is the only future to contemplate.

A Path to Net Zero

Cities and corporations around the globe are setting targets to radically reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in order to control climate change. These targets and commitments often align with a desire to achieve Net Zero emissions by a certain date in the future. Simply put, this means balancing associated emissions produced by an organisation’s operations and supply chain, and emissions taken out of the atmosphere.

Achieving Net Zero requires coordinated action touching on many aspects of the organisation. What may seem daunting can be broken down into strategic and manageable pathways for transformation that starts with analytics, moves on to developing solutions, and ends in implementing change.

Download our net zero guide

Green Building

The Strategic Framework

Our Net Zero framework focuses on four key areas for organisations to consider on the path to Net Zero. Click below to learn more:

AVOID Avoid future carbon emissions through evaluating the data, designing and making decisions differently
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REDUCE Reduce current greenhouse gases through greater efficiency in energy and materials, and using renewables
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INVEST Invest in removing carbon elsewhere within your value chain
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INNOVATE Innovate through collaboration in green finance, clean technology, big data and social movements
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Activating Net Zero Podcast Series

With the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) declaring a ‘Race to Zero’ ahead of COP 26, many corporations, cities, municipalities and governments are pledging to move to a Net Zero emissions performance for carbon and greenhouse gases. Through our new Activating Net Zero podcast series, we explore – in bitesize episodes – what this means, and how organisations can break this down into manageable actions, through our Net Zero framework.


avoiding emissions through design

Avoid emissions through better design

Smart decision-making and intelligent design can be used to set a low greenhouse gas trajectory that avoids future emissions even as your business and organisation grows.

Who is involved in setting science-based targets?

Who is involved in setting science-based targets?

SBTs are both a challenge and opportunity as they bring together disparate stakeholders, including:

  • Energy and Carbon stakeholders from facilities and finance
  • Sustainability teams
  • Product managers
  • In the supply chain: buyers, merchants and procurement organizations

What is the internal impact of setting SBTs?

What is the internal impact of setting SBTs?

When setting targets, a company is effectively setting an internal price on carbon. For those that implement the targets across the organization, it can change how people act and how decisions are made. The value of taking action on these topics might have a longer payout but reduce more energy and carbon than some of the shorter-term projects that fit into the standard quarterly corporate decision-making timescale. Carbon targets require a balance of near-term actions and long-term planning. Companies must shift their outlook to accommodate targets whose length and duration can be 5,10, or even 15 years in some cases. This shift forces a lot of new engagement and decision making.

These goals require a high level of ambition and engagement in decision making, oftentimes more than a sustainability team is used to. This includes getting C-suite approval for long-term duration and high-ambition targets that we don’t always know we can achieve. In addition to raising internal awareness around sustainability, these conversations can be a great catalyst for taking action on other topics too.

Uncovering Emissions Data and Insights with clients

Uncovering Emissions Data and Insights with clients

The accounting processes used in supply chain engagement and Scope 3 reductions have been around for decades. And yet, guiding a client through the process with their own data outside of the scope of their operational emissions (Scope 1 and 2) can be transformative. The long tail of impact in supply chains often leaves sustainability teams astonished in the face of a footprint that is up to 10 times their operational footprint. It’s an exciting challenge to work with clients to determine the most advantageous approach to collect data over time, engage for action and account for it.

Operational emissions will always be the lower hanging fruit and thus the first step to drive progress on SBTs and to move towards net-zero. Fortunately, the path is straightforward and well-trodden. It is mainly a transactional challenge to procure renewables across portfolios (China notwithstanding).

Getting to actual zero is going to be hard from a baseline point of view and in managing forward, future growth while remaining flat. This is where we need to see significant progress among businesses as they take steps to account for their footprint, engage with supply chains, and couple business value and net-zero action.

Anthesis recommends companies set science-based reduction targets (SBTs), preferably aligned with a 1.5°C pathway and preferably capturing scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions to form a foundational part of a corporate climate strategy. Companies should prioritize reductions across their value chain and think about their SBTs as incremental steps along their journey towards net zero, because, reductions alone will not get us there.

Learn about our GHG management solution: RouteZero

Services we offer to aid in avoiding emissions:




reducing emissions through renewable energy

Reduce carbon through renewables, efficiency and waste reduction

Cleaner, more efficient operations and supply chains result in a better performance across all aspects of a triple bottom-line account. Investing in renewable energy production, reduced energy consumption, materials and other resources all help bring down costs and carbon equivalents, leading to a return.

Services we offer to aid in carbon reduction:




Invest in carbon insetting & offsetting

Invest in removing greenhouse gases within your value chain

Many organisations’ ambitions to achieve a Net Zero performance will require investing in solutions outside of their operations, using techniques such as carbon capture and use to neutralize residual emissions. Emerging areas of interest include developing in-setting opportunities within value chains.

Services we offer to guide investments in solutions:




innovate with technology

Innovate through collaboration and new technologies

Rapidly building a climate positive future will call on human ingenuity and collaboration on an unprecedented scale. New ways of working, technologies, changing behaviours and values require innovation fusing finance, information, technology and human behaviour.

Services we offer to drive innovation:




net zero guidance

Guidance for reaching Net Zero Targets

TCFD: Exploring the Guidance for Private Equity

In March 2020, the UN Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI) launched a technical guide on implementing TCFD for private equity general partners (‘the Guide’).

The Guide sets out the actions that GPs can take to address the four-pillar framework of the recommendations proposed by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), and was contributed to by a range of private equity General Partners (GPs), Limited Partners (LPs) and advisors.


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