Our Climate Commitment
Science tells us that the next 10 years will be the defining decade for dramatic emissions reductions to limit the worst impacts of climate change. Facebook is committed to tackling climate change through our global operations, value chain, and beyond, and supporting cross-sector collaboration to scale innovations and science-driven solutions.
From the beginning, we have been committed to designing, building, and operating some of the most energy and water efficient data center facilities in the world. We are on track to meet our operational renewable energy goal and emissions reduction target. In 2020 and beyond, Facebook will achieve net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for our global operations (scopes 1 and 2) and be supported by 100 percent renewable energy. We are committing to reaching net zero GHG emissions for our value chain (scope 3) in 2030.
We support the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and we are aligning our program with the latest science on what is necessary to transition to a zero carbon future.
What is Net Zero?
Net zero GHG emissions means we are removing the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere as we emit. To achieve net zero 20 years ahead of the Paris Agreement, Facebook will reduce our GHG emissions and support carbon removal solutions.
Reducing GHG emissions across our global operations and value chain is a priority. We will continue to reduce our scope 1 and scope 2 emissions in line with climate science by increasing the efficiency of our operations and maintaining 100 percent renewable energy.
We will approach scope 3 GHG reductions by incorporating principles of sustainable design and circular economy into the life cycle of our consumer hardware products, server hardware, corporate offices and data centers. This includes evaluating materials with lower carbon impacts, building repairability and recyclability principles into design processes, extending the life span of our hardware, and continuing to ensure responsible end-of-life management.
Through our Responsible Supply Chain program, we partner with suppliers to build capacity on data reporting and to support on-site energy assessments that identify energy reduction opportunities and improve environmental performance. Building on these engagement programs, we will be providing support for energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy procurement. We will also work with key suppliers to help them set their own science-based targets and implement accurate greenhouse gas emissions reporting.
Removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere is key to limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. When combined with achieving significant emissions reductions, carbon removal solutions can serve as a bridge toward long-term decarbonization. We recognize that some of our emissions will be very difficult to reduce by 2030 and we will support projects that remove carbon equivalent to the emissions we are not able to reduce by then.
Our approach to carbon removal builds on carbon credit purchases of more than 100,000 metric tons in 2019 from projects such as forest conservation. Moving forward, we will support carbon removal projects, starting with nature-based solutions, and also invest in emerging technologies that will advance the industry.
When selecting carbon removal projects, we will prioritize those that demonstrate additionality, are designed for permanent impact, align with social and environmental co-benefits, and enable climate justice and equity. In addition, project benefits need to be quantified using recognized standards and assured by an accredited third-party verifier.
Data, Science, and Partnerships
Beyond reducing the impact of our own operations, we are committed to accelerating the transition to a zero-carbon future and advancing climate resilience through environmental stewardship. In recent years, we have significantly accelerated efforts to advance climate change solutions through our core products and services.
In 2020, we launched the Climate Conversation Map to help partners better understand how climate conversations ebb and flow throughout the world and over time.
Recognizing the importance of science-based climate information on our platform, we also launched the Climate Science Information Center, which connects our community with factual resources from the world’s leading climate organizations and actionable steps people can take in their everyday lives to combat climate change.
We will continue to expand partnerships with nonprofits, businesses, and civil society to help share information about the impacts of climate change through our platforms and scale climate solutions.
GHG Emissions Accounting
With an ongoing commitment to transparency, we are expanding our 2019 reporting to include all relevant scope 3 categories for our GHG emissions. Facebook’s GHG emissions are calculated based on the WRI/WBCSD Greenhouse Gas Protocol and have been verified by a third party. Our 2019 market-based scope 1 and 2 emissions totaled 252,000 metric tons of CO2e, while our scope 3 market-based emissions totaled 5.7 million metric tons of CO2e. Our scope 3 emissions were calculated based on environmental economic input output (EEIO) factors, life cycle assessments (LCA) and actual activity data. We will continue to share our GHG emissions annually.
- Scope 1 emissions are our direct emissions. Examples include natural gas and shuttle services.
- Scope 2 emissions are indirect emissions from energy that we purchase.
- Scope 3 emissions are indirect emissions throughout our value chain. Examples include business travel, employee commute, capital goods such as construction and manufacturing supply chain, and purchased goods and services.