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PepsiCo Debuts New Climate Plan With 2030 Goal

Image via PepsiCo

It's not surprising that PepsiCo, which has been the second largest food and beverage company in the world by sales for five years running, isn't known for its environmental record given the nature of its business.

PepsiCo is perennially near the top of the list of the world's worst plastic polluters alongside Coca-Cola and Nestlé, according to Break Free From Plastic, which is a movement with 1,500 member organizations working towards eliminating plastic pollution.

"Our 2020 Top Global Polluters remain remarkably consistent with our previous brand audit reports, demonstrating that the same corporations are continuing to pollute the most places with the most single-use plastic," the organization's 2020 report said.

PepsiCo didn't waste long to reveal how intends to tackle this issue as the company revealed an accelerated climate plan yesterday that it hopes will get it off of the top plastic polluters list.

Under its new plan, PepsiCo is now targeting a more than 40% reduction of absolute greenhouse gas emissions across its value chain by 2030. PepsiCo is also committing to achieve net-zero emissions by 2040, which is a decade earlier than called for in the Paris Agreement.

The reduction in emissions planned for by 2030 under PepsiCo's plan is the equivalent of taking more than five million cars off the road for a full year, according to the company.

"The severe impacts from climate change are worsening, and we must accelerate the urgent systemic changes needed to address it," PepsiCo Chairman and CEO Ramon Laguarta said. "Our ambitious climate goal will guide us on the steep but critical path forward -- there is simply no other option but immediate and aggressive action."

PepsiCo's strategy is driven by science-based measures and cost-benefit analysis and is targeting areas that have the most impact and can be scalable across the entire value chain. Some of the actions PepsiCo is committed to include expanding sustainable agriculture, improving packaging by reducing virgin plastic use and increasing recycled content, and continuing to source renewable electricity.

PepsiCo met its target last year to source 100% renewable electricity in the U.S. as it also set a new target to source 100% renewable electricity across all of its operations globally by 2030.

As a younger generation of investors increasingly hold companies accountable for their impact on Earth, PepsiCo has little choice but to begin its transformation as it remains one of the world's worst plastic polluters.

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