Only fractions of global heavy industry are aligned with Paris climate goals

(EurActiv, 19 Feb 2021) Only 14% of publicly listed companies in the steel, cement, aluminum, paper and mining sector are on track to meet the Paris Agreement’s 2°C climate target, according to a report by the Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI), a global investor group supported by the UN. Still, some European companies offer hope, EURACTIV Germany reports.

Industrial decarbonisation is probably the biggest challenge of the European Green Deal, which aims to reduce Europe’s emissions down to net-zero by 2050.

In a study published this week, the independent capital-owner-led TPI assessed mining companies and manufacturers of paper, steel, cement and aluminum from around the world to find out whether they are aligned with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement.

The result: 95 out of the 111 large publicly-listed companies studied (86%) are failing to align with a pathway to 2°C or below by 2050.

Of the 111 companies in global heavy industry surveyed, only 16 are well on track to revising their own production processes in such a way that they could meet the requirements of a climate-neutral future.

Overall, only 14% of them are on track to meet the international treaty’s 2°C warming target.

While heavy industries are generally considered difficult to decarbonise, the pace at which new ways to reduce emissions are being tested and implemented is too slow, the report warns.

“Whilst it is concerning that so few industrial companies are ready it is clear that new industrial processes based on circular economy principles give us a tipping point of technically viable, economically attractive solutions,” said Adam Matthews, co-chair of TPI.

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EurActiv, 19 Feb 2021: Only fractions of global heavy industry are aligned with Paris climate goals