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Green trees | AccountingWEB | ‘Huge milestone’ for ACCA on net zero journey
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ACCA hits milestone on net-zero journey

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The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants has became the first global professional accountancy body to have its net-zero targets verified, marking a crucial point in the organisation’s sustainability journey. 

18th Mar 2024
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The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) having its net-zero targets verified is a “hugely important milestone”, according to director of global business services Dale Burridge.

Last month, ACCA became the first global professional accountancy body to have its net-zero targets verified by the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi), whose goal is to drive climate action in the private sector by enabling organisations to set such goals. ACCA is targeting a 50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030 and net zero by 2045, using science-based best practice.

Rigorous and transparent

Burridge said securing the verification was a “very pleasing achievement so early on in our net-zero journey and demonstrates the action we are taking in response to the climate crisis in a credible, rigorous and transparent way”.

“Reaching this milestone also gives us a clear focus on what actions we need to take going forward,” he added. “Having our targets and methodology validated by SBTi has sharpened our focus on different scope areas of emissions, helping to make our plans to reduce them more effective.”

Over the course of the next year, ACCA’s primary focus for its net-zero goal will be around “creating action plans and embedding our sustainability objectives” throughout the organisation.

Burridge added that achieving intentional and sustainable emissions reductions will “take some time, so ensuring we have robust plans is vital”.

“At this stage of our journey, progress in the next 12 months will be having targets and actions around the specific activities that drive our carbon footprint, for example in our supply chain and operations.”

Vital and evolving role

As far as the body’s members go, Burridge believes they have a “vital and evolving role in planning sustainability goals for their organisations, as well as driving them forward and measuring outcomes”.

“The introduction of new global sustainability reporting standards has made this even more important,” he said. “We have set ambitious targets aligned with our vision, values and purpose and would encourage our members to support their organisations in doing the same.

“The climate crisis is real and we must all act now to combat climate change and the impact it is having on the environment.”

Drive change

Burridge also noted: “No single profession can solve all our world’s challenges alone. However, the global nature of accountancy – and the central role of accountants working in and for organisations – means that our profession is unique in its ability to drive change and help build a better world.”

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