Glossary term

Long-Term Science-Based Target

Last Updated:

Number of definitions:


Definition 1

Long-Term Science-Based Target means [an organisation OR a Project]'s target to reduce Scope 1, 2 and 3 Emissions by [2050 OR 2040] that has been validated by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi).

Definition 2

Long-Term Science-Based Target means [an organisation OR a Project]'s target by [2050 OR 2040] to reduce both of the following:

(a) at least [95 (ninety-five)] percent of its scope 1 and 2 emissions

(b) at least [90 (ninety)] percent of its scope 3 emissions.

Drafting notes and guidance

Long-term science-based targets clearly show companies how much they need to reduce their scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions by now, to attain their target.

Long-term science-based targets are crucial therefore for aligning corporate organisational emissions with reaching net-zero at global or sector levels in eligible 1.5 Celsius pathways by 2050 or sooner.

The definitions in both options align with the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) Corporate Net-Zero Standard.

Option 1 requires companies to be validated by SBTi.

Option 2 aligns with the Corporate Net-Zero Standard but does not require SBTi validation.

The SBTi recommends a five-step approach to setting a long-term science-based target:

  • selecting a base year;
  • calculating emissions;
  • setting target boundaries;
  • choosing a target year; and
  • calculating targets.

Long-term science-based targets must cover at least 95 percent of company-wide scope 1 and 2 emissions and 90 percent of scope 3 emissions. However, long-term science-based targets can differ according to sector. For example, in the forest, land, and agriculture (FLAG) sector, companies should reduce their scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions by 80 percent.

Please see the SBTi's Corporate Net-Zero Standard paper for sector-specific targets.

Is this page useful?