Why set science based targets for nature

Why set targets?

Because reversing nature loss in line with science will create a future of resilient businesses, healthy cities and sustainable economies

Download guidance for companies

Impacts of business activities are the primary drivers of nature loss and climate change. And as home to 55% of the global population, cities also have a vital role to play in meeting global targets to tackle nature loss and climate change. 

Setting targets through the Science Based Targets Network means your company or city can be confident of doing enough to help restore balance to the global commons. Companies and cities need Science Based Targets for both climate and nature to future-proof their businesses and play their part in reducing the risk that nature loss and climate change present.

“It is very important that the business community has common guidance and is benchmarked against scientific frameworks. At Kering we have a science-based target for our greenhouse gas emissions to measure our climate actions, and a science-based target for nature is equally important to drive companies to take action on nature.” Marie-Claire Daveu
CSO, Kering

Consolidation

The methods and targets designed by SBTN are being built on existing sustainability tools, approaches, and platforms, providing an efficient and effective resource for business users.

Practicality

We are working with end users to “road test” draft methods and ensure that SBTs are practical and intuitive for businesses, irrespective of industry and where they sit on the value chain.

Credibility

The guidance is being developed by experts from the world’s leading environmental NGOs, governmental organizations, purpose-driven consultancies, ambitious businesses, and society-minded business coalitions. The guidance is grounded in the best available science defining what is necessary for business and cities to do their part to stay within Earth’s limits.

Stability

While the science will continue to evolve, SBTN’s framework for setting SBTs will be designed for long-term use. Today, we are proposing a series of principles that we will use for selecting indicators and best practices for target implementation that can underpin ambitious corporate action for nature. These can ensure that resources invested by companies have a lasting impact.

Prioritization

The SBTN approach to target setting will help companies prioritize places and issue areas for action, using the best available science, so that companies can confidently address their most urgent impacts and dependencies.

Alignment

The approach to setting SBTs lends itself to straightforward communication about your target-setting journey. Using the terminology of the five-step process (see What are SBTs? page), companies can say “I am at Step 1: Assess” or “I am on Step 4: Act and Step 5: Track.” This is helpful for internal stakeholders, as well as stakeholders like investors, NGOs, and third-party monitors. Given that the targets companies can set using SBTN’s methodologies are explicitly aligned with global societal frameworks for action, SBTs can be used to quickly communicate which issues you are contributing toward resolving (e.g., land and sea use change, ocean and freshwater resource exploitation). SBTN’s indicator framework will help ensure you are measuring the right indicators and are able to assess how these contribute toward your desired outcome. By aligning with society’s long-term goals, you can ensure your business is moving in the right direction.

Co-benefits

A key advantage of integrated SBTs is that they are being designed to recognize the interconnection of issue areas. This allows companies to take action on multiple issues at once and not create new problems. When designed and implemented correctly, SBTs can help resolve interrelated climate and nature risks, including

  • creating resilience to climate hazards like heat waves, floods, and droughts
  • conserving freshwater resources and increasing water security
  • regenerating land systems supporting healthy, diverse oceans
  • conserving biodiversity and preventing species extinction
  • ensuring equal opportunities for societies to sustain a decent living and to access the benefits of the transition toward a zero emission, nature-positive future.

When designed and implemented correctly, SBTs can help resolve interrelated climate and nature risks, including:

  • Creating resilience to climate hazards like heat waves, floods, and droughts
  • Preserving freshwater resources and increasing water security
  • Regenerating land systems
  • Supporting a healthy, diverse ocean
  • Conserving biodiversity and preventing species extinction
  • Ensuring equal opportunities for societies to sustain a decent living and to access the benefits of the transition toward a zero- emission, nature-positive future.
“At Natura & Co we believe that companies have a major responsibility in creating a more sustainable world. We all depend on nature. For our products, we need to ensure nature is used in a sustainable way both for the good of our business as well as for the traditional communities from whom we source. We are working with the Science Based Targets Network to ensure that the actions we take now, lead us in the we are taking the right direction to protect and restore nature in line with remaining within Earth’s limits on a socially equitable basis.” Marcelo Behar
VP for Sustainability & Group Affairs, Natura & Co