Chemicals and petrochemicals
Guidance for the chemical and petrochemical sector
Why take action?
The chemical and petrochemical sector is responsible for one eighth of global industrial carbon emissions. Companies in this sector have a crucial role to play in limiting global warming to 1.5ºC. Committing to climate action through science-based targets will drive sustainability improvements across the value chain.
How to set a target
Leading global chemical companies have begun to set science-based targets (SBTs) that meet broad Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) criteria.
To spur further action across the sector, the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) has launched an ongoing scoping project to develop sector-specific methods, to guide chemical and petrochemical companies in setting ambitious targets and begin decarbonization.
By participating in this project, your business will join climate leaders like Royal DSM and Syngenta.
World Resources Institute (WRI) is the managing SBTi partner for this project.We would like to recognize the following individuals for their contributions in the SBTi Chemicals Expert Advisory Group: David Meneses (Air Liquide), Andreas Horn (BASF), Peter Levi (International Energy Agency), Philip Blakeman (Johnson Matthey), Ananda Sekar (SABIC), Brian Rakvica (Syngenta), Liam McCarroll (Univar Solutions).
The avoided GHG emissions generated from the use of chemicals are outside the scope of SBTi.
Financial support is being provided by 3M.
The scoping project is comprised of four phases:
- Kick-off webinar in early 2020
- Feb-August 2020: Scoping interviews and research (stakeholder engagement process)
- Sept-Nov 2020: Compile feedback and consultations with the Expert Advisory Group
- Dec 2020: Public announcement and publication of the Final Scoping Brief
Here are highlights from the development process so far:
- February 2020: Joined by speakers from DSM, IEA and Navigant, the scoping project was launched with an online webinar. Watch the webinar recording and view slides.
- June 2020: Distributed a survey to gather input from stakeholders on key issues and challenges faced by chemical companies when setting science-based targets. The survey results will be a central input into the SBTi’s final project document summarizing barriers for adoption as identified by chemical companies. The deadline to complete the survey was August 14.
- September 2020: Hosted a consultation webinar with the SBTi Chemicals Expert Advisory Group to have a granular conversation around the specific challenges chemical companies face when setting SBTs. Watch the webinar recording and view slides.
- Chemicals Sector Project Description (October 2018)
- Chemicals Sector SBTi Overview (October 2020)
- Energy Technology Perspectives 2020
- IEA Future of Petrochemicals report
- Guidance for Accounting and Reporting Corporate GHG Emissions in the Chemical Sector Value Chain by WBCSD (January 2013)
- Roadmap for the Dutch Chemical Industry Towards 2050 by Verband der Chemischen Industrie (VCI), DECHEMA and FutureCamp (September 2019)
- Scope 3 Evaluator tool by GHG Protocol and Quantis
- Working Towards a Greenhouse Gas Neutral Chemical Industry in Germany
- Initiative Overview and proposal for New Chemicals Sector Target-Setting Methods: Nate Aden (WRI) and Pedro Faria (CDP), March 2017
Browse more sectors
If your sector is not listed here, you can still set a science-based target using our methods and resources. Consult the step-by-step guide to get started.