Canada requires unprecedented business leadership to achieve its legislated net-zero goals by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement. While corporate, small, and mid-sized enterprise (SME) pledges have proliferated, in some cases there is a lack of credibility and robustness of targets, which could create a false sense of progress.
CBSR’s Net-Zero Leaderboard (the Leaderboard) provides Canada’s only one-stop-shop for information on private sector net-zero commitments. The Leaderboard uses key target criteria to track progress on corporate and SME commitments, including interim targets, scopes, and alignment with science-based targets.
Collected through publicly available data and validated to ensure consistency and transparency, the Leaderboard offers a credible, robust, and accessible public platform to demonstrate corporate leadership and accountability.
By providing visibility to net-zero pledges and commitments from businesses, we hope to show what is possible and inspire others to join the race to net zero —kickstarting an important conversation about closing the gap between ambition and action.
Demonstrate net-zero commitments of Canadian business leaders, exemplify robust business ambition, and inspire new corporate climate change commitments.
Increase momentum on corporate action by building a community of environmental practice and providing data for peer–benchmarking.
Separate greenwashing from positive impact through accountability demonstrated by established and internationally recognized metrics (such as interim targets, scope 3, SBTi).
Increases transparency, accountability, and recognition.
Provides better information for forecasting and measuring sectoral progress.
Informs progress on Canada’s net-zero journey – a snapshot of whether we are on the right track or not.
Fills data gaps and consolidates information valuable for further research and analysis.
Q. Do you have to be a Canadian company to be accepted on the Leaderboard? Can international companies submit?
A. No. The Leaderboard has a Canadian corporate focus; we only accept entries from international companies with Canadian operations and climate targets.
Q. Can small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) apply to be included on the Leaderboard?
A. Yes! We accept any size business as long as they have a publicly communicated commitment to net zero that is in line with the Paris Agreement.
Q. What if I only have an international target?
A. To keep the Net-Zero Leaderboard focused on Canadian progress, we require international companies to submit supporting resources exemplary of their Canadian operations to be considered. International targets alone will not be showcased in the Leaderboard.
Q. Do you need to be a CBSR member to be a part of the Leaderboard?
A. No, we accept entries from non-member corporate entities as well. However, with CBSR membership, businesses can access the Net-Zero Working Group. CBSR’s Net-Zero Working Group is an intra-industry working group that brings together some of Canada’s biggest brands and companies across industries. The working group focuses on peer-to-peer learning and knowledge sharing to enable businesses to overcome challenges associated with achieving net-zero climate commitments.
Q. What is the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi)?
A. Science-based targets provide a clearly defined pathway for companies and financial institutions to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, helping prevent the worst impacts of climate change and to future-proof business growth. Targets are considered “science-based” if they are in line with what the latest climate science deems necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement – limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.
To learn more, check out the SBTi website
Q. Do you have to have an SBTi to be on the Leaderboard?
A. No. Only publicly communicated targets that are in line with the Paris Agreement are presented on the Leaderboard; i.e., net-zero targets by or before 2050 or companies that are committed to setting targets through the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). We highly encourage aligning targets with the SBTi framework.
Q. How are entries added?
A. We expand and update the Leaderboard through the online Net-Zero Leaderboard application form.
Q.How does CBSR evaluate leaderboard submissions?
A. We receive information from corporate entities through the online Net-Zero Leaderboard application form. The entries received are validated through publicly available evidence to ensure consistency and transparency. We use open-source data and publicly available document sources to categorize net-zero data in a comparable way. The application includes various net-zero criteria, including the adoption of interim targets, the inclusion of scopes 1-3, and the alignment with science-based targets. Once the verification process is completed, the entries are added to the Leaderboard.
Scope: The Scope column of the Net-Zero Leaderboard is meant to show which scopes (1, 2, and/or 3) are addressed in an organization’s net-zero targets. To determine which scopes are being addressed, we review the organization’s publicly available net-zero goals or strategy and identify the specifics of the net-zero ambitions including mention of the scopes directly or of the scope’s description. If we cannot determine which scopes are included in net-zero targets, the column will be labeled “Unclear”.
You can find the outline of each scope below.
– Scope 1 is defined as direct emissions from owned or controlled sources.
– Scope 2 is defined as indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy.
– Scope 3 is defined as all indirect emissions (not included in scope 2) that occur in the value chain of the reporting company, including both upstream and downstream emissions.
Interim Targets: Interim Targets are explicit & incremental goals that support an organization’s timeline to net zero. Put more simply, interim targets are progress mile-markers that help organizations stay on track to get to destination net zero. Interim targets have a goal year attached to them to keep your organization on pace. Below is an example:
– Our organization set a goal to be net zero by 2050 and have net-zero carbon in investments by 2040.
More information on how to utilize interim targets can be found in SBTi’s Manual, here.
Net Zero CO2 Emissions / Carbon neutral: Anthropogenic CO2 emissions are balanced globally by CO2 removals over a specified period. Source
Net-zero emissions: Anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere are balanced by anthropogenic removals over a specific period. Source
Climate neutral: refers to a state where human activities result in no net effect on the climate system. Source
Climate positive: Taking or causing action beyond carbon neutrality by removing GHGs from the atmosphere or reducing emissions to the atmosphere such that the aggregated reductions and removals exceed the unabated emissions from the subject. Also referred to as “Carbon negative”. Source
Q. What is CBSR’s Net-Zero Working Group?
A. The Net-Zero Working Group convenes corporate CBSR members to advance the adoption and implementation of net-zero ambitions. The Working Group has been active for two years and is continuing to grow. By providing resourcing and peer inputs, we support Canada’s top net-zero leaders and build their capacity to accelerate their progress towards climate targets. Members can publicly showcase their business leadership through CBSR’s Net-Zero Leaderboard, thought leadership assets, and an electronic badge for program participation.
Q. Do you need to have a net-zero target to be a part of the working group?
A. No, you do not need to have a net-zero target in place. Over the two-year duration of the program, CBSR members will embark on a continuous journey to develop and implement their net-zero targets. Topics covered include robustness considerations, target setting, and interim targets setting.
Do you want to develop your company’s net-zero targets?
Become a CBSR member to join the Net-Zero Working Group, click here for more information
Q. Where does the Net-Zero Leaderboard go from here?
A. The Net-Zero Leaderboard has become a nationally recognized and utilized resource for net-zero tracking that is leveraged by stakeholders, governments, and consumers to perpetuate a standard practice across industries. We are actively seeking partnership with investors, corporate leaders, government entities, and academic institutes to advance and improve functionality of the Leaderboard. We are committed to advancing the value of the Net-Zero Leaderboard, profile leaders and their best practices, and report on progress to support Canadian companies in the transition to net-zero. Our goal is to establish the Leaderboard as a primary credible resource to track Canada’s performance towards net zero.