Net Zero: Obstacles and Catalysts for Business Climate Action

A new white paper from EDF+Business and The SustainAbility Institute by ERM explores the research findings of interviews and surveys with companies navigating internal and external obstacles on their path to net zero.

Global temperature rise will likely exceed the 1.5°C threshold during the 2030s, if not earlier, if urgent, aggressive action is not taken.

That action must come in part from companies that are working to reduce their emissions around the globe – but businesses face a number of challenges in achieving their climate goals. ERM and EDF+Business conducted research to understand these obstacles, and the catalysts that might help to overcome them.

Key Findings

The research identifies common themes in both internal and external obstacles, including:


  • Strategy: Connecting company climate goals with broader business strategy.
  • Organization: Assigning and fully integrating operational ownership of climate goals.
  • Value Chain and Scope 3: Measuring and managing emissions associated with complex value chains.


  • Policy and Regulation: Additional governmental policy that supports corporate climate action and investment.
  • Technology: Greater availability and knowledge of climate-related technological solutions.
  • Tools and Guidance: Improved understanding of the relevant climate-related tools and guidance available.

Despite these challenges, the research finds that companies are confident that the right assistance, capacity and resources will enable them to overcome these obstacles, and catalyze action toward achieving their climate goals.

Download the white paper from EDF+Business and ERM