What is Race to Zero?

The Race to Zero is a global campaign to rally leadership and support from businesses, cities, regions, investors for a healthy, resilient, zero carbon recovery that prevents future threats, creates decent jobs and unlocks inclusive, sustainable growth. All members are committed to the same overarching goal: achieving net zero emissions as soon as possible, and by 2050 at the very latest. Launched on 5th June 2020, World Environment Day, it brings to life a global alliance of initiatives on net zero that will run up to the UN Climate Change Conference COP26 and beyond.

What’s the objective of the Race to Zero?

The objective is to build momentum around the shift to a decarbonized economy ahead of COP26, where governments must strengthen their contributions to the Paris Agreement. This will send governments a resounding signal that business, cities, regions and investors are united in meeting the Paris goals and creating a more inclusive and resilient economy.

Why is business advocacy important in the lead up to COP26?

We won’t reach zero emissions in time if we don’t start moving today. The Paris Agreement sets the roadmap for reaching that final destination, with pit stops every five years, starting in 2020. We can’t be late, we must deliver on the promise of Paris. Setting ambitious and credible net zero commitments sends the strongest signal to markets, supply chains, governments and consumers that businesses can are committed to the transition. Business commitments to net zero are vital and can set a demand signal that encourages further ambition from others, creating mutually reinforcing action between government and the private sector. 

What are the benefits to businesses that join the Race to Zero?

Joining the Race to Zero, through its partner initiatives, will result in your business action being recognised as credible and science-based, joining a community of members spanning regions and sectors with whom to share best practices and playing a role in a decisive year of climate action.

How can businesses join the Race to Zero?

Businesses can join the Race to Zero by joining on of the partner initiatives – the biggest and high ambition option for businesses is Business Ambition for 1.5oC. Alternatively, SMEs can join the Race to Zero via the SME Climate Hub

Where can I learn more about the Race to Zero?

For more information on the campaign and how to join, visit the UNFCCC website.

What is COP26 and when will it take place? 

COP26, or the 26th Conference of the Parties to UN Framework Convention of Climate Change, will be held at Glasgow, Scotland in partnership with Italy from Nov 1st to 12th 2021. At COP21 (2015), the Paris Agreement was adopted, which is aimed to keep the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 ℃ above pre-industrial levels; and to pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5℃. This agreement requires every single signatory state - both developed and developing countries - to reduce GHG emissions.  

What are some other ways businesses can support climate action in the lead up to COP26?

Under the UK’s Presidency of COP26, we are focused on 5 five themes: the clean energy transition, clean transport, nature-based solutions, adaptation and resilience and – underpinning these – finance. Businesses can support ambitious climate action on themes by joining the following initiatives: