At Abt, mission-driven doesn’t just describe our work; it reflects the way we operate and how we engage with our clients, colleagues, and the world. Our mission and the goal of everything we do is to improve the quality of life and economic well-being of people worldwide—every day.
Acting on Climate Change
Climate change exacerbates every social and environmental challenge we seek to address. That’s why Abt is committed to aggressively reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions within our operations, our supply chain, and within the products and services we deliver to our clients around the world.
Our Climate Commitments:
- Expand our GHG reduction target to cover Abt’s global footprint
- Align our GHG reduction strategy to keep warming to a 1.5°C pathway
- Reach science-based net zero emissions by 2050
- Set an interim science-based target of 38.6% reduction (Scope 1+2 and Scope 3) by 2027 over 2019 levels
We have tracked Abt’s GHG emissions since 2012 and achieved a 49.7% reduction in our U.S.-based emissions as of 2019—beating our first reduction target. In doing so, we expanded Abt’s GHG inventory to encompass our global operations—including Abt Britain and Australia—as well as additional sources of emissions like telecommuting.
Prior to COP26, Abt joined the global Business Ambition for 1.5°C and Race to Zero campaigns, making the commitment to align our climate mitigation targets with the goal of keeping global warming to 1.5°C and reaching science-based net-zero emissions by 2050. Our near-term science-based target was validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) in June 2022. To further our transparency and deepen our climate commitments, Abt verified our net-zero target with SBTi in May 2023.
The following are Abt’s official targets:
Overall Net-Zero Target: Abt Associates to reach net-zero GHG emissions across the value chain by 2050 from a 2019 base year.
Near-Term Target: Abt Associates commits to reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions 38.6 percent by 2027 from a 2019 base year. Abt Associates also commits to reduce absolute Scope 3 GHG emissions from fuel- and energy-related activities, business travel, and employee commuting 38.6 percent within the same timeframe.
Long-Term Targets: Abt Associates commits to reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions 90 percent by 2050 from a 2019 base year. Abt Associates commits to reduce absolute Scope 3 GHG emissions from fuel and energy related activities, business travel, and employee commuting 90 percent within the same timeframe.
The targets for Scope 1 and 2 emissions from Abt’s operations are consistent with reductions required to keep warming to 1.5°C. Abt’s target for Scope 3 emissions from our value chain (e.g., emissions from our partners in joint operations, our use of supply chains) meet SBTi’s criteria for ambitious value chain goals, meaning it is in line with current best practice. We will continue to reassess our target every five years—or as targets are met—to expand our ambition and actions.
We are committed to externally verifying our emissions on a biennial cycle and publicly report our inventory to The Climate Registry and through annual the CDP Climate Change Questionnaire. Abt's GHG inventories for the years 2012 through 2020 have been externally verified to reasonable assurance standards for Scope 1 and 2 emissions and to limited assurance standards for Scope 3 emissions. Abt's 2021 and 2022 emissions inventory are scheduled to be reviewed and verified in Q3 of 2023. Preliminary numbers for these years are included in the chart and table below.
GHG Emissions Actual v. Target
GHG Emissions by Source
Making an Impact in Our Communities
Our employees are driven, passionate, caring people who not only create impact through their work, but in their communities. We offer funding and support so staff can advance their impact outside of the office by participating in community-based service, fundraisers, and directly engage in the communities they live and work.
All of Abt’s community engagement efforts are chosen based on their alignment with our five mission-impact goals: Good Health, Economic Security, Effective Governance, Equity and Inclusion, and a Thriving Environment. From environmental cleanups to racing for a cause, every activity furthers our mission impact.
Committed to Transparency
Abt is deeply committed to advancing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Ten Principles of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), in addition to reporting on our own mission impact goals through our annual Mission Impact Report and topical publications. We adhere to international frameworks such as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) across our annual corporate reporting for enhanced transparency and accountability. To request a copy of our corporate Environmental Policy, please contact the Global Sustainability Program.
To evolve and deepen Abt’s understanding of how our work and operations impact key stakeholder groups, we undertook a stakeholder mapping exercise in FY23. The assessment considered internal drivers shaping how we engage with our clients, community, and employees, as well as external drivers, such as regulatory requirements, ESG reporting requirements, and ESG risks to our business. Stakeholder priorities were assessed using employee dialogues and surveys, our past ESG disclosures, peer and sector disclosure benchmarking, regulatory and legal requirements, and industry best practice.
Abt’s key stakeholder groups identified during this process include clients, suppliers, industry peers, multi-stakeholder networks and professional associations, governments and regulators, our environment and natural resources, our communities, beneficiaries of our work, Abt’s people and future talent, and ESOP shareholder and participants. Going forward, Abt will refresh this process at least once every three years under the direction of our Sustainability Committee to reassess the key stakeholders impacted through our business and operations, how we engage with them, and examples of topics and responses to maximize feedback opportunities. This information will be used to address key areas of impact—risks and opportunities—upon which to focus our materiality assessment and business strategy.