“Net Zero” – Still a Big Con!

Earlier on in the year, ecosocialist.scot reported on “The Big Con”, a report by Friends of the Earth International and other organisations on “net zero” – The Big Con: ‘Net zero’ emissions is a dangerous hoax.

Now we have further evidence of the way that “net zero” is being used by corporations to block climate policy with the publication of an set of case studies compiled by four campaigns listed below.

“Net Zero” is a significant policy campaign of both the Scottish government and the UK government, the Scottish government even has a dedicated website called “Net Zero Nation” with the slogan “Scotland. Let’s do net zero”.

But this research shows how “net zero” is an empty slogan and is being used as greenwashing by six major corporate players – BP, Microsoft, Drax, IETA, BlackRock and Shell.

One of the essential slogans of the COP26 Coalition call for a Global Day for Climate Justice on 6 November is

We Need Real Zero, Not Net Zero“.

This needs to ring and loudly and clearly across Glasgow and Scotland on 6 November!

We reproduce the press report from the Corporate Europe Observatory that links to the new evidence.


On the road to COP26, corporations are using “net zero” to block effective climate policy and greenwash their image while maintaining business-as-usual. Alongside Corporate AccountabilityFriends of the Earth International and Global Forest Coalition, CEO has looked into the “net zero” conning and COP26 greenwashing of six major corporate players, but they’re not alone.

In June 2021, more than 70 climate justice groups around the world launched a report, “The Big Con”. This report built on previous reports and analysis of “net zero” and revealed how Big Polluters across various economic sectors are advancing a “net zero” agenda to delay climate action, deceive the public, and deny the need for real, urgent, and meaningful action. This fact file builds on “The Big Con” by providing more detail on the “net zero” agendas of six major corporate players. These corporate actors include COP26 sponsors, Big Oil and Gas majors, and key influencers in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), as well as in other “net zero” related initiatives such as the Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets (TSVCM) and the Race to Zero.

Read the 2 page summary here

Read the more in-depth factfile here

Published by Corporate Europe Observatory, 28 October 2021