The world continues to experience the environmental and social implications of a changing climate and increasingly understands its potential to disrupt global supply chains, hamper economies, displace people and exacerbate conflict.1,2
We know this decade is critical and that our response must be substantial if we hope to avert the worst implications of climate change. That understanding is fundamental to Kimberly-Clark’s goal to shrink our carbon footprint across all our brands, while simultaneously fulfilling our mission to make lives better.
We aspire to help avert the worst impacts of climate change, both within our own operations and across our value chain. Our customers, consumers, and investors expect Kimberly-Clark to respond with strong, specific plans and actions. That's why we committed to aggressive, science-based GHG emissions reduction targets that are aligned with the Paris Climate Agreement and have been validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Meeting these goals will contribute to holding global temperature rise to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels.
Over the last several years we have executed on our aggressive energy and climate goals and continue to increase our ambition. In 2020, after achieving our 2022 GHG reduction goal early, we announced our current 2030 SBTi-approved goals, to reduce the carbon footprint of our products and brands by reducing our direct and indirect (Scope 1 + 2) emissions by 50% and value chain emissions (Scope 3) for purchased goods & services and end of life treatment of sold product by 20% versus a 2015 base year.
1 - Swiss Re Institute research on the Economics of Climate Change
2 - NOAA report on climate change impacts
In 2021, Kimberly Clark made significant progress towards our 2030 target. Through our focus on increasing renewable electricity capacity in North America via wind and solar power purchase agreements, we decreased our emissions from operations by 7.9 percentage points to achieve a 40.7% Scope 1 & 2 GHG emissions reduction from a 2015 base year. Along with these efforts, our work to lower energy consumption in our manufacturing operations resulted in a 12.3% reduction in energy intensity from our 2015 baseline. We achieved a 6.3% Scope 3 GHG emissions reduction with focus on purchased goods and services and end-of-life treatment of sold products (both from a 2015 base year).
Our successful reductions have been driven by the adoption of leading energy efficiency and resource conservation practices, expansion in the use of alternative energy to power our facilities, and engagement with internal and external stakeholders to reduce emissions throughout our value chain.