Join the race

Campaign Overview Race to Zero is the UN-backed global campaign rallying non-state actors – including companies, cities, regions, financial and educational institutions – to take rigorous and immediate action to halve global emissions by 2030 and deliver a healthier, fairer zero carbon world in time.

All members are committed to the same overarching goal: reducing emissions across all scopes swiftly and fairly in line with the Paris Agreement, with transparent action plans and robust near-term targets.

Led by the High-Level Climate Champions for Climate Action – Nigel Topping and Gonzalo Muñoz – Race To Zero mobilizes actors outside of national governments to join the Climate Ambition Alliance, which was launched at the UNSG’s Climate Action Summit 2019 by the President of Chile, Sebastián Piñera.

It mobilizes a coalition of leading net zero initiatives, representing 35 regions, 799 cities, 4,475 companies, 731 educational institutions, 250 financial institutions and over 3,000 hospitals from 45 healthcare institutions. All actors must meet stringent criteria which will bring them to the starting line to credibly race to zero emissions. These ‘real economy’ actors join 120 countries in the largest ever alliance committed to halving emissions by 2030 and achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 at the latest.

Its sibling campaign – Race to Resilience – was launched at the 2021 Climate Adaptation Summit. It is the UN-backed global campaign to catalyse a step-change in global ambition for climate resilience, putting people and nature first in pursuit of a resilient world where we don’t just survive climate shocks and stresses, but thrive in spite of them.

Find out more here.

Apply to Join the Race
  • Join As a Partner

    On the road to COP26, the High-Level Champions will engage new coalitions and initiatives who are prepared to meet Race to Zero’s ‘minimum criteria’ (see below for more information). Partner initiatives act as the secretariats through which individual members can join and thus facilitate the exponential growth of members joining the Race to Zero.

    These Partner initiatives are required to apply by filling in an application form in which they must demonstrate how they manage their members to meet the criteria. Their application will be reviewed by an independent, Expert Peer Review Group who will determine whether or not the Partner initiative meets the criteria.

    To join as a Partner initiative, please:

    1. Submit your application form
    2. Submit a list of your members

    Send to our Technical Expert Peer Review Group, chaired by Oxford University: RaceToZero@unfccc.int

    The Race to Zero Application Procedure document outlines the process for initiatives wishing to apply.

    If you have any further questions about the application process or wish to speak to a member of the Race to Zero Campaign, please contact: RaceToZero@unfccc.int.

  • Join As a Member

    Individual organisations are invited to join the Race by applying to the relevant Partner Initiative listed above. The High Level Champions welcome participants from all sectors of society, across the world, to ensure a just and global transition to a zero carbon future.

Why join?

  • Your climate commitments and action efforts will be recognised as credible and science-based, supported by the UN;
  • You will be supported in setting, implementing and achieving your targets;
  • You will join a community of members spanning regions and sectors, with whom to share tools and knowledge;
  • You will have access to powerful communications material and play a part in the run up to and at COP26;
  • You will actively play a role in 2021 as the most decisive year in climate action history.
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Race to Zero Partner Application Procedure 4 MB DOWNLOAD
Understand the Criteria The High-level Climate Champions require that the commitments brought forward by networks and initiatives recognized in the Race to Zero campaign meet a minimum set of procedural criteria.

These process criteria represent the “Starting Line” for the race, so meeting them does not necessarily imply that an actor is on track to net zero, only that they have begun the process.

From January – March 2021, these criteria underwent a public consultation in order to be strengthened and clarified, a process led and summarised by the University of Oxford.

These ‘meta-criteria’ are known as the Four ‘P’s:

  1. Pledge: Pledge at the head-of-organization level to reach (net) zero GHGs as soon as possible, and by midcentury at the latest, in line with global efforts to limit warming to 1.5C. Set an interim target to achieve in the next decade, which reflects maximum effort toward or beyond a fair share of the 50% global reduction in CO2 by 2030 identified in the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5C
  2. Plan: Within 12 months of joining, explain what actions will be taken toward achieving both interim and longer-term pledges, especially in the short- to medium-term.
  3. Proceed: Take immediate action toward achieving (net) zero, consistent with delivering interim targets specified.
  4. Publish: Commit to report publicly both progress against interim and long-term targets, as well as the actions being taken, at least annually. To the extent possible, report via platforms that feed into the UNFCCC Global Climate Action Portal.

Entities may not count offsets towards their emissions reduction targets.

To understand these criteria in more depth, please see our Interpretation Guide.

To help with understanding the various terms used, please see our Lexicon.

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Race to Zero Criteria 183 KB DOWNLOAD
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Race to Zero Criteria (Japanese) 281 KB DOWNLOAD
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Criteria Interpretation Guide 688 KB DOWNLOAD
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Race to Zero Lexicon 256 KB DOWNLOAD
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Summary of Race to Zero Criteria Consultations 427 KB DOWNLOAD
Help Accelerate the Race

In the Race to zero emissions, it’s imperative to galvanise action amongst all types of actors and ensure the Race to Zero builds traction exponentially.

Race to Zero has already grown rapidly in membership through existing Partner Initiatives. A wide number of actor types, sectors and regions are now represented by these Partners, but we need more.

Initiatives and networks who cannot join the Race as Partners are encouraged to drive their members towards the Race by signposting these members to existing Partners. In doing so, such initiatives and networks will dramatically help accelerate the Race.

These ‘Accelerators’ will commit to transformationally amplifying membership; will actively contribute to supporting their members applying to Race to Zero, and will spread awareness of the Campaign through consistent messaging and events.

For sector-specific Accelerators, we also welcome your support towards achieving the Race to Zero emissions Breakthroughs.

  • Who are our Accelerators

    We are thrilled to recognise as Accelerators the following initiatives:

    • CBI – The Confederation of British Industry is a not-for-profit membership organisation that speaks on behalf of thousands of UK businesses in the belief that business has the power to do good.
    • GSMA – The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting more than 750 operators with almost 400 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and internet companies, as well as organisations in adjacent industry sectors.
    • UKGBC – UKGBC is uniting the UK building industry using sustainability as a catalyst to positively transform the places people use every day. A charity with over 500 member organisations spanning the entire sector, UKGBC represents the voice of the industry’s current and future leaders who are striving for transformational change.
    • Corporate Leaders Group -The Corporate Leaders Groups’ members seek to share experiences with policymakers and business to promote ambitious and practical outcomes which: help achieve the goal of net zero emissions in the UK and Europe by 2050 at the latest; ensure cumulative global carbon emissions do not exceed one trillion tonnes; limit global temperature rise to well below 2°C, aiming for 1.5°C; and build an economy that supports and enables the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
    • Alliances for Climate Action – Alliances for Climate Action (ACA) is a network of national alliances dedicated to driving ambitious climate action, increasing public support for addressing the climate crisis, and engaging national governments to decarbonize faster.
    • Sustainable Healthcare Coalition – a healthcare sector led group that looks for the greatest opportunities to inspire sustainable practices in healthcare through the collaboration of its members.
    • Bankers for Net Zero – an initiative bringing together banks, businesses and regulators to enable banks to successfully support their clients, accelerate the transition to net zero and deliver on the UK government’s ambitions for addressing climate change.
    • Community Impact Challenge – an INSEAD alumni-led initiative launched globally in December 2019, which brings together a growing network of volunteers and supporters to create a positive impact in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
    • Edie – edie is the industry-leading, purpose-driven business media brand which empowers sustainability, energy and environmental professionals of all levels to make business more sustainable through award-winning content and events.
  • How to become an Accelerator

    If you wish to contribute to accelerating the Race, please reach out to RacetoZero@unfccc.int and include the following:

    1. A list of your members
    2. A forward look of how you plan on driving your members into Race to Zero in the run up to COP26 (through events, teach-ins, communications, membership criteria etc.)
    3. An estimate of the number of members you aim to help recruit into the Campaign by November