Cushman & Wakefield announced ambitious science-based targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that are approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). In addition, by signing up for the Business Ambition for 1.5ºC campaign, Cushman & Wakefield pledges to reach net-zero emissions across its entire value chain by 2050.
“With buildings generating a significant portion of the world’s carbon emissions, we recognize Cushman & Wakefield plays a vital role in shaping a sustainable future for the real estate industry and beyond,” said Brett White, Executive Chairman & CEO of Cushman & Wakefield.
Cushman & Wakefield will immediately focus efforts on its corporate offices and operations by committing to reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 market-based GHG emissions 50 percent by 2030 from a 2019 base year. Scope 1 includes direct emissions, and scope 2 emissions are from purchased heat and electricity.
The firm’s science-based targets will not only reduce absolute GHG emissions from its corporate operations but will also include the facilities it manages on behalf of its clients, some of the world’s largest real estate owners and occupiers.
Leading by example, the firm commits to partnering with its clients (representing 70 percent of its scope 3 value chain emissions) to set their own science-based targets by 2025. Notably, approximately 99 percent of Cushman & Wakefield’s emissions come from facilities it manages on behalf of clients, and the firm is committed to actualizing its vision of a sustainable future that extends beyond its own corporate footprint.
These targets have been approved by the SBTi.
Additionally, by 2050, the firm pledges to achieve net-zero emissions across its entire value chain, encompassing all direct and indirect business elements that contribute to GHG emissions (scopes 1, 2 and 3). This target was pledged through the Race to Zero campaign and the SBTi’s Business Ambition for 1.5°C pathway—initiatives using climate science frameworks to reach net zero in a global effort to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change.
“As a leader in the commercial real estate industry, we understand environmental action requires bold commitments aligned with climate science,” said John Forrester, President of Cushman & Wakefield. “These commitments further our ongoing efforts to reduce our impact and our clients’ impact on the environment as well as mitigate the impacts of climate change. We have an opportunity and responsibility to continually evaluate our organization and hold ourselves accountable for the intended outcomes. We realize our work goes beyond the present moment and will impact generations to come.”
“We congratulate Cushman & Wakefield on setting science-based targets consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C, the most ambitious goal of the Paris Agreement,” said Alberto Carrillo Pineda, Managing Director, Science-Based Targets at CDP, one of the SBTi partners. “By setting ambitious science-based targets grounded in climate science, Cushman & Wakefield is taking action to prevent the most damaging effects of climate change.”
These recently announced science-based targets build upon Cushman & Wakefield’s longstanding commitment to reducing its own environmental impact across the property life cycle, in addition to suppliers’ and clients’ impact. In 2020, the firm achieved a 1.1 percent absolute reduction in scope 1 and 2 (market-based) GHG emissions; a 2.5 percent absolute reduction in scope 3 GHG emissions; and a 14 percent reduction in total scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions per million square feet (MSF) of office space. Cushman & Wakefield also worked with clients to provide energy and sustainability services to over 370 MSF of space in the U.S. in 2020. More information is available in the firm’s 2020 Corporate Social Responsibility Report.