Agilent Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced its commitment to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions no later than 2050. The commitment adds to the global effort by governments, corporations, and other institutions to limit warming of the climate to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, a goal of the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change.
To ensure the company achieves its net-zero goals, Agilent has also committed to interim greenhouse gas reduction targets. By 2030, Agilent will reduce absolute scope 1 and 2 emissions by 50%, and scope 3 emissions by at least 30% (with a stretch goal of 40%) from a base year of 2019. Scope 1 covers direct emissions from owned or controlled sources, while Scope 2 covers indirect emissions from the generation of purchased electricity, steam, heating and cooling consumed by the reporting company. Scope 3 includes all other indirect emissions that occur in a company's value chain. To achieve these targets, Agilent will continue to invest in renewable energy and focus on three areas where its carbon footprint is greatest: purchased goods and services, sold products, and transportation and distribution.
“Agilent has been committed to sustainability and environmental protection since our founding,” said President and CEO Mike McMullen. “This commitment to net zero is consistent with our history and our mission of delivering insights that advance the quality of life. Agilent, with our culture of innovation, is in a strong position to contribute important solutions to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“Our commitment to net zero isn’t just the ‘right thing’ to do. It’s aligned with our core business objectives as well.”
In addition to setting interim targets for achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions, Agilent is committing to the Science Based Targets Initiative’s Business Ambition for 1.5°C. This additional step will ensure that the company’s goals are aligned with scientific consensus on progress needed to meet the Paris Agreement and in support of the UN’s Race to Zero Campaign.
To provide investors with meaningful sustainability information, Agilent is adopting the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations, which complement the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) guidelines Agilent introduced in 2020.
Since Agilent’s creation in 2000, the company has reported on its progress in reducing energy, waste, water, and CO₂ emissions every year. Since 2014, Agilent has reduced its scope 1 and 2 CO₂ emissions by 22%, even as the company has continued to grow.
“Our approach is about transparency, innovation, meeting our targets and focusing on continuous improvement to reduce our carbon footprint,” said Neil Rees, vice president, Workplace Services and head of Agilent’s ESG programs. “We will report on specific strategies and targets, particularly for engaging our suppliers and partners to reduce emissions for what we buy, how we transport materials, and how we design our products. These goals are a starting point. As we learn more and technologies evolve, we intend to enhance and expand our commitment.”
Environmentally conscious product design is a central feature of Agilent’s business. Agilent has engineered its instruments to improve sustainability in a holistic way — from product design and manufacturing to usage and disposal. Agilent was one of the first companies in its class to be independently audited for the environmental impact of some of its largest product lines, including liquid and gas chromatography products and mass spectrometers.
Several Agilent products have already received the My Green Lab Accountability, Consistency, and Transparency (ACT) label, which provides customers important information on the environmental footprint of products. For seven consecutive years, Agilent has been named one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World and has ranked in the top three of Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies for three consecutive years.
“We view our commitment to net zero as an important and serious initiative that will influence all aspects of our business,” said McMullen. “We believe our approach that includes interim targets, planned third-party reviews, and a robust set of processes to ensure we achieve net zero by 2050 is substantive, thorough and methodically designed to achieve our goals.”
To learn more about Agilent’s sustainability work, please see Agilent’s 2020 Corporate Social Responsibility report. In addition, a fact sheet with additional details on Agilent’s net-zero commitment is available on Agilent’s website.
This news release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and is subject to the safe harbors created therein. The forward-looking statements contained herein include, but are not limited to, net zero commitments, emissions targets and initiatives, and reporting of progress on these targets and initiatives. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause Agilent’s results and achievements to differ materially from management’s current expectations. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, unforeseen changes in the demand for current and new products, technologies, and services; customer purchasing decisions and timing; changes in developing standards and certifications; and the cost and availability of renewable energy and carbon removal and offset projects. In addition, other risks that Agilent faces in running its operations include the ability to execute successfully through business cycles; the ability to meet and achieve the benefits of its cost-reduction goals and otherwise successfully adapt its cost structures to continuing changes in business conditions; ongoing competitive, pricing and gross-margin pressures; the impact of geopolitical uncertainties and global economic conditions on its operations, its markets and its ability to conduct business; the ability of its supply chain to adapt to changes in demand; the ability to successfully introduce new products at the right time, price and mix; the adverse impacts of and risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and other risks detailed in Agilent’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended July 31, 2021. Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs and assumptions of Agilent’s management and on currently available information. Agilent undertakes no responsibility to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement.