UCC report reveals Irish businesses are largely underprepared for a net zero transition

A new sustainability report launched today at Microsoft Envision has revealed that Irish businesses are significantly underprepared when it comes to making the changes required to transition to a net zero future.

The new UCC Sustainable Futures report entitled “The Sustainability Transformation: Assessing the Readiness of Irish Businesseswas commissioned by Microsoft Ireland to understand the level of business preparedness for a sustainable, net zero future and includes a national survey of 380 SMEs and larger enterprises across a range of sectors.

The report found that one in five (19%) businesses are yet to start their sustainability journey, while less than one in ten (9%) consider themselves to be well-advanced or truly sustainable.

Concerningly, even for those who are in the early stages of their sustainability journey, three in five businesses are yet to formulate a dedicated sustainability strategy or policy. 20% of businesses surveyed said they had no set commitments or targets relating to any critical sustainability issues.

There is strong evidence to suggest that Irish businesses underestimate the scale of ambition and action that are required to build a path to net zero emissions by 2050 with just 22% of Irish businesses having committed to a net zero target.

This is despite Government setting out to reduce emissions nationally by 51% by 2030 and to become carbon neutral by 2050. Moreover, larger Irish businesses will be required to publicly disclose information on how they engage with environmental, social, and governance issues as part of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive from 1st January 2024.


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