CMS UK and its international offices today announce ambitious plans to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025 backed by Science Based Targets which will ensure independent, scientific verification and align the firm with UN goals to limit a global temperature rise to 1.5˚C.
The firm is thought to be one of the first in the sector to set Science Based Targets and is now seeking independent verification for its commitment from SBTi, an organisation formed by the United Nations, World Wide Fund for Nature, CDP and others to encourage and measure corporate climate action.
CMS has spent 12 months measuring its greenhouse gas emissions across its jurisdictions globally, including in Central & Eastern Europe, Asia and the Middle East, with the support of Carbon Intelligence, the carbon management and energy performance business.
As a result it has been able to set Science Based Targets focused on a 30% reduction of emissions by 2025 and a 50% reduction by 2030 for both its own operations (known as Scope 1 and 2 targets), as well as for its supply chain (known as Scope 3 targets). The firm will offset remaining emissions to go net zero by 2025 and is also exploring options to go net negative and address its historical carbon debt.
Penelope Warne, The Senior Partner at CMS, comments:
“We are living through difficult times, but as a firm we recognise that climate change remains a central priority for us, our people and our clients. That is why it is so important that our commitment to reduce emissions to net zero by 2025 is backed by scientific and independently verifiable measurement. It also focuses our attention and efforts on practical behavioural change, operational improvements and supporting suppliers to make a real difference.”
The firm has introduced a programme of over 20 workstreams to address Climate Change and Sustainability and is already acting to meet its new Science Based Targets. Examples include:
- renegotiating electricity contracts to maximise supply from renewable sources – seven of the firm’s eight UK offices now run on 100% renewable electricity;
- the firm’s Procurement team leading a review of suppliers’ carbon reduction commitments and working with them to develop sustainability workshops to share best practice in the supply chain;
- considering further energy efficiency measures in its buildings;
- disclosing its UK carbon reduction activity to CDP (the well-known and respected, independent, not-for-profit benchmarking organisation) which this year ranked the firm ‘B’ for its own activity and ‘A-’ for the work it is doing with suppliers;
- raising awareness of climate change risk across all practice areas;
- launching a mobile app to help over 3,200 of its people assess their own carbon footprints;
- using a print awareness tool to gamify paper saving across the firm, working with PrintReleaf to plant over 2,000 trees and counting to offset paper usage, using Forest Stewardship Council certified paper, and ensuring all paper is recyclable;
- developing a CR programme to support environmental volunteering for its people and clients.