Set a target as a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME)

Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) can submit targets through an exclusive streamlined target validation route. This allows SMEs to bypass the initial stage of committing to set a science-based target and the standard validation process.


An SME is defined as a non-subsidiary, independent company which employs fewer than 500 employees.

This does not include financial institutions (FIs) and oil and gas (O&G) companies.

SMEs have two target-setting options

Near-term targets:
Near-term science-based targets are absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions reduction targets that should be achieved by 2030, from a predefined base year. SMEs often lack the resources and capabilities needed to set scope 3 targets. Because of this, SMEs are not required to set near-term targets for their scope 3 emissions. Instead, they must commit to measure and reduce these emissions.

Net-zero targets:

To be eligible to set a net-zero target, SMEs must first set near-term targets aligned to a 1.5°C pathway.

Net-zero targets include:

  • Long-term science-based targets, which are absolute scope 1, 2 and 3 GHG emissions reduction targets that should be achieved by 2050, from a predefined base year
  • A commitment to neutralize any unabated emissions when the long-term science-based target is achieved.

SME service costs

  • Setting new near-term targets or replacing previous near-term targets: $1,000 USD*
  • Setting new net-zero targets ONLY (only SMEs with existing validated 1.5°C near-term targets are eligible for this option): $1,000 USD
  • Setting near-term targets AND net-zero targets: $2,000 USD*