Environment Businesses urged to sign up to UAE’s Cop28 charter By Sarah Townsend November 1, 2023 Wam The Cop28 presidency, led by Sultan Al Jaber, is encouraging companies to set 'science-based' net-zero transition targets Presidency encourages ‘bolder action’ Private sector engagement ‘vital’ Companies should commit to public targets The Cop28 presidency has drawn up a Net-Zero Transition Charter to which private sector businesses can sign up to give greater credibility to their net zero strategies. The aim is to encourage the private sector to take “bolder action on climate change and commit to greater accountability in their net-zero emissions pledges,” according to a statement from the UAE’s Cop28 organising body. By joining the charter, Cop28 said, participating companies commit to: publicly setting 1.5 degree-aligned, “science-based, credible and transparent” targets for reaching net zero by 2050 and reducing their emissions in the interim; setting these targets in the form either of a net-zero-aligned national pledge or internationally recognised net zero initiative that holds members to account for progress made; producing a science-based net-zero transition plan within one year of the Cop28 summit, and publicly reporting their annual greenhouse gas emissions and progress on net-zero transition plans through globally recognised reporting platforms that feed into the United Nations Framework Convention Climate Change Global Climate Action Portal. The private sector accounts for around 80 percent of global GDP and the bulk of the world’s energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, and therefore has a crucial role to play in the fight against climate change, according to Cop28. The two-week summit, hosted by the UAE, starts later this month. Its president, Sultan Al Jaber, said that the private sector’s engagement in Cop28 was “vital”. “The Net-Zero Transition Charter will further enable the private sector to take meaningful action on climate, track progress and be held accountable.” The Cop28 presidency has called on businesses and governments to collaborate to reduce emissions by 43 percent in the next seven years, to keep global warming within the 1.5 degree Celsius maximum increase set by the 2016 Paris Agreement.