Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced a series of new climate commitments, including goals to reach net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) by 2040 and to achieve emissions reductions of 95% in its operations and 90% in its value chain by that date.

Pfizer’s new goals include the achievement of the Net Zero Standard. The standard was launched last year by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) to assess and certify the company’s commitments to achieve net zero emissions through stringent criteria including decarbonization of 90-95% by 2050, with neutralization of residual emissions that are not yet possible to cut. Pfizer aims to achieve the standard ten years ahead of its requirements.

Albert Bourla, Pfizer Chairman and Chief Executive Officer,  said:

“The window is closing to minimize the potentially catastrophic impact of climate change, which affects the health of our planet and that of people around the world. With urgency of action increasing, we firmly believe that our commitment to accelerate decarbonization of our value chain and achieve the Net-Zero standard – which aligns with Pfizer’s purpose and ESG priorities – can help drive positive change and build a healthier, more sustainable world.” 

In order to reach its new goals, Pfizer aims to accelerate the transition away from fossil fuels and work with suppliers to take equivalent action. Pfizer stated that partner action and innovation are needed to develop the technologies to enable the generation of heat and steam production to meet the demand of its manufacturing, research & development, and commercial operations without fossil fuels. Pfizer also plans to transition its fleet of vehicles to hybrid and electric alternatives.

The company has also signed a pledge by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that calls on stakeholders in the U.S. healthcare system to reduce GHG emissions and build a more climate-resilient healthcare infrastructure. Through this, Pfizer commits to reduce GHG emissions, report on its progress, and develop climate resiliency plans.

In 2020, Pfizer set its previous GHG emission goal to become carbon neutral by 2030 and reduce Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 46% by 2030 from a 2019 baseline. The company stated that it remains committed to reducing Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 46% by 2030 as an interim milestone towards its new 2040 target.

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