At COP27, Guterres Calls for End to ‘Rank Deception’ in Net Zero Promises

WASHINGTON, D.C. – At the release of a report by the High-Level Expert Group on Net-Zero Commitments of Non-State Actors, in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres’ called net-zero’ pledges by fossil fuel companies aimed at covering up massive fossil fuel expansion “rank deception.”

In response, Anne Perrault, climate finance policy council with Public Citizen, issued the following statement: 

The Expert Group provides a clear-eyed assessment of untrustworthy commitments by financial institutions and businesses to reduce their emissions to net-zero by 2050. These groups, for example, cannot claim to be committed to net zero by 2050 while continuing to build or invest in new fossil fuel supplies. Honest, credible commitments by the private sector are vital to slowing the climate crisis. 

Credible net-zero pledges must cover all greenhouse gas emissions and all scopes of emissions, have interim targets every five years starting in 2025, and have transparent, measurable action plans. A task force to define a legally binding framework for non-state actors’ net zero plans is also critically important. 

To bolster the stability of the financial system and help financial institutions manage climate-related financial risk, we urge financial regulators to adopt these recommendations in their rules and guidance. 

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