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Unilever to Miss SBTi Emissions Targets – Planet Tracker

Consumer goods giant Unilever is set to miss its emission targets set by the Science-based Targets initiative (SBTi) by 45%, consistent with a 2°C warming scenario by 2030, according to the latest analysis by financial think tank Planet Tracker. The research indicates that Unilever’s current strategies to mitigate emissions are incompatible with a 1.5°C pathway. By 2030, the company’s emissions are projected to be 10,203 KTCO2e higher than the recommended level by the SBTi, equivalent to the current national emissions of Estonia. To meet its emissions reduction targets, Unilever must reduce its Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions by 16% by 2025 and 34% by 2030, based on a 2022 baseline. In particular, the company needs to reduce its Scope 3 emissions by 36% (or 3.55% per year) to align with a 1.5°C scenario by 2030. According to Planet Tracker, Unilever faces a financial risk of US$1.5 billion to 3.8 billion over the next decade from external policy drivers, including land use regulation, carbon taxes, and rising energy prices. This represents up to 36% of Unilever’s current three-year average annual operating profit, with climate change-related impacts accounting for close to 6% of the profit. Investors should demand a higher level of disclosures connecting actions with investment and expected mitigation outcomes, in order to ensure the company’s targets have the potential of being reached,” said Ion Visinovschi, Research Analyst at Planet Tracker. The Climate Transition Analysis of Unilever is the fifth in a series examining the climate transition plans of consumer goods companies in the Climate Action 100+ focus list. Planet Tracker’s research into Unilever follows analysis of rival Nestlé, whose emissions trajectory is also found to be lacking.

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