Sustainability Report 2020

News & Stories

Science Based Targets by 2023

Lowering our emissions will remain the focus of our sustainability agenda in the future, too. We only recently committed to establishing Science Based Targets by no later than 2023. The goals established in 2018 are then to be replaced by climate targets in line with the targets for achieving the Paris Agreement. Integrating and continuing our work on upstream and downstream Scope 3 emissions will be a key topic here. As part of establishing Science Based Targets, we will switch to absolute reduction targets by 2023. To succeed in this, in 2020 we joined a project by the WWF, which helps companies in Austria create Science Based Targets.

Science Based Targets Initiative

The Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) is a partnership between the CDP, the United Nations Global Compact, the World Resources Institute and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). The SBTi defines and promotes best practice in science-based target setting and independently assesses companies’ SBTs. The SBTi assesses and approves SBTs, guarantees external validation and ensures that companies’ targets are in line with the Paris Agreement. Science Based Targets provide companies with a clear route to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, helping prevent the most severe consequences of climate change and future proofing company growth. Targets are considered “science-based” if they tally with what the latest climate science considers necessary to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. Specifically, this means limiting global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels and continuing efforts to keep this below 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Offsetting emissions

While reducing our energy requirements, improving efficiency and increasing the share of green energy will massively improve our emissions levels in the years ahead, we also have to think about emissions offsetting. Carbon offsetting is a way of protecting the climate that serves to balance out current greenhouse gas emissions. However, our principle here is that we will look into offsetting greenhouse gas emissions only once we can no longer avoid and reduce these. As emissions offsetting cannot be our initial priority, we have not yet developed a strategic roadmap for this and have instead directed our focus towards reducing emissions. Nevertheless, we will also play an active role in offsetting and create a roadmap for offsetting remaining emissions by 2023. Increasing numbers of standards have been established on the market for voluntary offsetting in recent years. International standards such as the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and the Gold Standard will play a central role when developing our roadmap.

Carbon pricing as a necessity

In our first sustainability report in 2018, we aimed to set an internal CO2 price. This has still not been finalized, mainly because we had to recalculate our Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions in the last two years and make corrections accordingly. We therefore had to postpone our plans for internal carbon pricing. But postponed is not the same as canceled. By 2023, we intend to make a fresh attempt and address internal emissions taxation.

Become an A-list team in climate protection

Years ago, we committed to taking a transparent approach to our emissions and carbon footprint. In line with this, we publish our emission levels every two years as part of our sustainability report and every year at CDP. In 2020, almost 10,000 companies published their environmental and climate data through the CDP database. Only 277 of them made it onto the climate change A-list. Given our continual improvement in recent years, in 2018 we set ourselves the goal of receiving a B score by 2020. After achieving this target, we set another ambitious target: We aim to continue improving our score and for the company to make it onto the prestigious A-list. Meeting this target of an A score by 2024 will, above all, require further integrating climate-related risks and opportunities into our management processes.

Our CDP climate score

Our CDP climate score (graphic)

Go carbon neutral as quickly as possible!

One project of which we are particularly proud is our participation in klimaaktiv pakt2020. klimaaktiv pakt2020 is an initiative by the Austrian Environment Ministry that aims to make large companies in Austria pioneers of an environmentally friendly economy. Only twelve companies met the strict selection criteria and were allowed to participate in this climate alliance. Greiner Packaging Austria was one of these twelve and joined the pact in 2013. Voluntary but binding environmental targets were agreed with all partners to the pact. The national agreements constituted the minimum standard, which the partners in the pact were to attempt to exceed. Energy usage in 2005 was used as the baseline.

Tanja Zauner (Greiner Packaging), Technician Thermoforming (photo)

“We only have one planet and so protecting the environment comes above everything else. I am delighted that as a company we recently committed to establishing Science Based Targets by no later than 2023.”

Tanja Zauner (Greiner Packaging) Technician Thermoforming
klimaaktiv pakt2020 target agreements



National minimum targets by 2020


GPA pact targets
by 2020

Reduction in CO2 emissions





Increasing energy efficiency





Minimum share of renewable energy





Share of renewable energy in transport





With the exception of the share of renewable energy in mobility (5.7 percent), Greiner Packaging Austria not only achieved its goals – it clearly exceeded them. In October 2020, Greiner Packaging Austria was honored by the Austrian environment minister Leonore Gewessler as part of concluding the klimaaktiv pakt2020 partnership. In total, Greiner Packaging Austria implemented 61 measures as part of the pact, saving 8,580 MWh of energy. The overall performance of all companies involved in the pact is also impressive. Taken as a whole, between 2005 and 2020 they reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent, improved their energy efficiency by 33 percent and increased their use of renewable energy sources to 60 percent.

This London-based non-profit organization uses standardized questionnaires to collect data and information about CO2 emissions, climate risks and the reduction goals and strategies of companies on a voluntary basis. CDP now manages the world’s largest database of this kind.
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The chemical notation for carbon dioxide, a key component of the global carbon cycle. It is a gas that is naturally present in the Earth’s atmosphere and absorbs and reflects some of the heat emitted from the planet. Human activity massively increases the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, magnifying this greenhouse effect and resulting in global warming.
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Greenhouse gas emissions
Anthropogenic greenhouse gases are produced as a result of the manufacturing and burning of fossil fuels, agricultural activities, deforestation and industrial processes and the municipal disposal of waste and wastewater. The carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and other greenhouse gases emitted as a result of these activities change the composition of the atmosphere and are a major driver of climate change.
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Paris Agreement
The Paris Agreement is the first-ever universal, legally binding global climate change agreement signed by 190 parties. It was adopted at the Paris Climate Change Conference (COP21) in December 2015 and sets out a global framework to tackle climate change.
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The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC defines this as the period between 1850 and 1900. This is the period used to calculate global warming up to the present day.
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Science Based Targets Initiative
The Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) promotes climate measures in the private sector by helping companies set science-based emission reduction targets. Targets are considered “science-based” if they tally with what the latest climate science considers necessary to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.
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