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Number of companies setting carbon emissions reduction targets grows, report finds

Smoke stacks seen at an RWE coal power station near Bergheim, Germany, Saturday, September 24, 2005. The U.K., Europe’s third-largest power market, should turn to technologies that remove carbon dioxide from fossil fuels rather than nuclear generation, Environment Minister Elliot Morley said. Photographer: Wolfgang von Brauchitsch/Bloomberg News

A growing number of the highest greenhouse gas-emitting companies have set carbon emissions reduction targets for this year and beyond, said a report released Tuesday by CDP.

Among the 1,073 companies analyzed, 89% have set carbon emissions reduction targets for this year, with 68% setting targets to at least 2020 and 20% setting targets to 2030 and beyond. Last year's report found 85% of companies surveyed had set emissions reduction targets for the year, 55% had set targets to at least 2020 and 14% had set targets to 2030 and beyond.

This year's report also found 14% of the companies analyzed have or commit to having targets aligned with limiting the average global temperature increase to 2 degrees Celsius, up from 9% last year; 30% plan to set targets within two years.

Other findings from the CDP's 2017 report include:

  • Climate change is a focus of board members or senior-level management at 98% of the companies analyzed;
  • 97% of companies have integrated climate change into their business strategy;
  • 36% of companies now offer low carbon products like electric vehicles and zero-energy buildings, up from 30% in 2016; and
  • 32% of companies are using internal carbon pricing, up from 29% in 2016.