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Turmoil at the Science Based Targets Initiative: Staff Demand Accountability Over Carbon Offset Decision

In a recent turn of events, staff members at the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) have raised concerns over a decision allowing companies to utilisse carbon credits to offset greenhouse gas emissions from their value chain. This move, intended to address so-called Scope 3 emissions, has ignited a storm of criticism within the organisation, with staff calling for the removal of the CEO and a reversal of the policy. The decision, made without clear scientific justification, has left many questioning the integrity of the organisation and its commitment to genuine emissions reductions.

The controversy stems from fears that allowing companies to offset their emissions could undermine efforts to achieve meaningful reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Critics argue that while carbon offsetting may offer a short-term solution, it does not address the root cause of emissions and could provide a loophole for companies to evade their environmental responsibilities. Staff members have voiced their concerns in a letter to SBTi's board of trustees and CEO, demanding immediate action to rectify the situation and protect the organisation's reputation.

The backlash against the decision highlights the growing tension between the need for urgent climate action and the challenges of implementing effective strategies. While proponents of the policy change argue that it could incentivise ambitious climate action and attract investment, opponents remain sceptical of its effectiveness in driving genuine emissions reductions. The controversy underscores the importance of transparent and science-based decision-making in the fight against climate change.


At CAFA, we recognise the importance of setting rigorous and science-based targets for emissions reductions. We stand in solidarity with the staff members at SBTi who are calling for accountability and transparency in decision-making. As advocates for sustainability and environmental responsibility, we believe that genuine emissions reductions require comprehensive and meaningful action, not shortcuts or loopholes. We urge SBTi to heed the concerns of its staff and take decisive action to uphold its commitment to combating climate change.

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