We believe climate change is the biggest crisis we face as a society. Addressing this challenge requires creative solutions, unprecedented collaboration and innovation to drive positive change. Trust is the key to progress and is premised on action. Edelman partners with diverse clients committed to helping drive the transition to a net-zero future, helping them act and communicate in more meaningful ways.
Edelman’s Climate Change & Communications Training
Edelman launched the first mandatory, all-staff climate change and communications training in partnership with Columbia University’s Climate School. The training features video interviews with 15 experts in climate science, policy and action, as well as in agriculture, investment and journalism. Watch a short video about the training.
Effective Sustainability Communications: A Best Practice Guide for Brands & Marketers
The NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business (CSB) and Edelman released new, first-of-its-kind research. EXPLORE RESEARCH >
Research: How to Effectively Market Green Products
A study, involving Edelman and nine major brands, finds that despite corporate hesitations, sustainable products are growing twice as fast as conventional ones, appealing across all demographics. READ ARTICLE >
We recognize that urgent action is needed to mitigate the most dangerous impacts of climate change on both people and the planet. This requires the rapid reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and a global transition to a net-zero-carbon economy.
We are committed to a “Trusted Transition,” where we guide ourselves and our clients to action and transformation, built on a foundation of trusted communication.
We commit to the following six Climate Principles to guide us:
Work with those committed to accelerating action to Net Zero and in compliance with the Paris Accords.
Put science and facts first.
Advance best practices and standards for climate communications.
Focus on a just transition.
Hold ourselves accountable.
Trusted Transitions look different by sector, but for each organization it involves:
Setting credible short and long-term net-zero ambitions and goals.
Taking meaningful action to meet those ambitions and transform its business.
Ensuring honest and transparent communication with all stakeholders, from employees to communities, consumers to investors.
Working together with a third-party expert, we developed the following key areas to help assess whether new assignments for clients in heavy-emitting sectors are aligned with our climate principles. They include:
Whether the organization has a public position on climate change, and aligns with the goals of the Paris Agreement. To assess this, we look not only at company positions but also independent reporting.
Has the company set, or is it in the process of establishing a net-zero emissions goal, with both long-term and short-term targets? We hold the SBTi Corporate Net Zero Standard as the gold standard. We engage our clients on progress and recognize that this journey will look different across sectors and organizations.
The nature of the brief and the process for ensuring communications are credible.
These assessments are part of our review process led by our Client Portfolio Management Committee, a peer-led, cross-geography team responsible for vetting new opportunities in line with our climate principles. Our board-level climate and sustainability committee, chaired by an Edelman external board member, reviews our progress on our climate principles quarterly. In addition, we are fortunate to have diverse independent experts who we call upon to provide their insights and expertise on particular cases to help shape our decisions.
We recognize that we have a vital role to play — using communications to drive action, lifestyle changes and cross-industry solutions. Climate change is the biggest challenge we have in front of us, the challenge that exacerbates multiple interconnected crises including social inequality, food insecurity, migration and biodiversity loss. We believe that progress will be made by engaging organizations across all industries and sectors, as well as individuals. We need an inclusive approach, one that covers the big tent, otherwise we will not get where we need to go on this journey.
The Science-based Targets Initiative (SBTi) has approved Edelman’s near-term science-based emissions reduction target, and we have also committed to set long-term emissions reduction targets with the SBTi in line with reaching net-zero by 2050. Edelman commits to reducing absolute scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions 80% by 2030 from a 2019 baseline, and to reduce absolute scope 3 emissions covering purchased goods and services, fuel and energy related activities, upstream transport and distribution and business travel 55% within the same timeframe. We have also submitted our net-zero target date of 2040 to the SBTi and are awaiting validation (expected October 2023).
We’re honored to have an independent advisory board to bolster our expertise, advance the firm’s climate strategies and practices, and support efforts to shape global climate communications. The Council’s nine members are experts from around the world, with deep experience in climate science, policy, negotiations, mitigation, leadership, action, collaboration, and consumer engagement.
Dr. Yufu Cheng
China Director, R20 Regions of Climate Actions
President of the Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development