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The Accounting Bodies Network (ABN), including CPA Canada, commits to net zero

CPA Canada commits to achieving net zero carbon emissions within operations and will continue to support our members, companies, and government with resources to establish their net zero GHG emissions pathways.

CPA Canada is a proud member of the Accounting for Sustainability (A4S) Accounting Bodies Network (ABN). The ABN represents over 2.5 million accountants and students across the 179 countries.

“We are pleased to be able to make this commitment along with other accounting bodies from around the world,” says Charles-Antoine St-Jean, president and CEO, Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada. “It is essential that we demonstrate conviction and leadership within our own organizations if we are to earn the trust of businesses and other stakeholders and provide them valuable guidance as they strive to achieve net zero commitments.”

ABN net zero commitment

From the chief executives of global accountancy bodies:

“We are the chief executives of the global professional accountancy bodies listed below and members of The Prince of Wales’s Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) Accounting Bodies Network (ABN). We represent over 2.5 million professional accountants and students across 179 countries.

The impacts of climate change are already being felt throughout the world and the next decade is critical to limit its negative effects. With climate change comes potentially profound negative economic consequences, including impacts on production, financial stability, living standards, and employment, and more widely on social cohesion and political stability, along with the further degrading of the natural environment upon which we depend.

We recognise the scale of the effort needed both to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change: last year, the ABN released a call to action in response to the crucial role we can play in addressing climate change, and ABN members have already begun to take steps to reduce their carbon emissions in line with these commitments*. The recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned of severe consequences of a failure to prevent global warming exceeding 1.5° C and of the physical impacts that we are already certain to see. To limit the increase in global average temperatures to 1.5° C, emissions need to halve by 2030, and drop to net zero by the middle of the century for the best chance of avoiding the worst impacts of climate change.

Accountants and finance professionals, using their specific skills and expertise, can play a key role in helping our political leaders and the business community achieve commitments to reduce GHG emissions to net zero in line with the Paris Agreement.

For our professional organisations, we commit to:

  • reach net zero GHG emissions as soon as operationally possible, in line with global efforts to limit warning to 1.5°C
  • within the next 12 months, publish a net zero emissions pathway (including targets) and report annually to show our carbon emissions reductions and trajectory towards net zero emissions

For our members, we commit to:

  • encourage and provide our members with the training, support, and resources they need to establish their own net zero pathways and reduce GHG emissions
  • provide sound advice to help governments create the policy and regulatory infrastructure necessary for a just transition to a net zero carbon economy

While addressing climate change through our own operations is critical, we also wish to ensure others benefit from our transition. Therefore, we aim to share our experiences, and that of others, as examples to support our members, their clients, and the wider business community, as they implement their own net zero GHG emissions pathways.

In signing this statement, we are signalling our commitment, as members of the global accounting profession, to a net zero GHG emissions future.”