Glossary What is meant by net zero?

Net zero

Climate target for companies aiming to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by a given time. It is similar to the climate neutrality target (see Climate neutrality), but is more ambitious in some areas.

So far, there is no universal definition of net zero targets for companies. In most cases, however, it is assumed that companies in addition to greenhouse gas neutrality

  • ... base their emissions on the 1.5-degree target of the Paris Agreement on climate change, i.e. that they use science-based emission budgets and must account for all three scopes in accordance with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (see Greenhouse Gas Protocol)
  • ...may only offset their emissions with certificates if this is unavoidable (e.g. because there are no alternative technologies)