Our commitment to sustainability

The IFoA’s aim is to be Net Zero by 2030.

Short term

To date, with the help of independent reviewers, we have:

  • set our baseline figure with the IFoA’s 2019 data (pre-pandemic)
  • collected complete data for 2019 and 2020 (pandemic)

This data is not a true reflection of IFoA practices moving forward. We anticipate our scope 3 emissions will rise in the short term to some degree but not to 2019 levels. But significant changes following the pandemic will have long term, continuous impact. We are committed to an ongoing programme of action to reach our targets, and we will report on these annually.

Medium term

We are currently collecting and analysing our 2021 and 2022 data. And we are planning how we will cut our emissions with the development of a carbon management plan.

Long term

The IFoA strategy on carbon reduction will follow the guidance of the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). The initiative focuses on reduction to fall in line with the Paris Agreement objective to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees.

For the IFoA this translates to, by 2030, reducing our:

  • scope 1 emissions by 46.2%
  • scope 2 emissions by 46.2%
  • scope 3 emissions by 27.5%

Each year, a third-party supplier will calculate and review our data under scopes 1, 2 and, 3. On a regular basis, we will review our carbon management plan.

For an explanation of scopes, see What are scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions? | National Grid


We collected data retrospectively for 2019 and 2020. This was so we could get a pandemic baseline figure. This came with its own challenges where we had to work with the data available. As part of a learning curve, we have now improved data collection methods and awareness with internal teams and third-party suppliers to educate, inform, and improve.

Our commitment

The IFoA recognises that environmental issues are fundamental to a responsible business strategy. As an action-oriented, forward-looking global organisation we are committed to adopting sustainable business practices for the benefit of society and to secure the future of the planet.

IFoA emissions reductions 2019 to 2020

From 2019 to 2020, our total emissions fell by 33.2%. In 2019, we emitted 8,339.8 tCO2e (tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent). This dropped to 5,571.9 tCO2e in 2020.

Broken down into the 3 scopes, our:

  • scope 1 emissions fell by 13.1% (from 25.9 to 22.5 tCO2e)
  • scope 2 emissions fell by 24.6% (from 172.9 to 130.4 tCO2e)
  • scope 3 emissions fell by 33.4% (from 8,141 to 5,418.4 tCO2e)

Figure 1: 2019 market-based greenhouse gas emissions by source (tCO2e) excluding investments

Upstream transport and distribution: 50%, purchased goods and services and capital goods: 27%, business travel: 14%, purchased energy: 5%, employee commuting: 3%, fuel and energy related activities: 1%, direct emissions: less than 1%

Figure 2: 2020 market-based greenhouse gas emissions by source (tCO2e) excluding investments

Upstream transport and distribution: 11%, purchased goods and services and capital goods: 67%, business travel: 4%, purchased energy: 10%, employee commuting: 4%, fuel and energy related activities: 2%, direct emissions: 1%, upstream leased assets: 1%

The impact of the pandemic has driven changes to our emissions by the nature of changing our working practices.

Many of these changes the IFoA has embedded, such as making exams online, increasing home working, and reducing office sizes as part of our property strategy.

While the world opens post lockdowns, we anticipate an increase in emissions for 2021 and 2022 data but not to the pre-pandemic levels of 2019.


We have addressed the challenges we had in our retrospective data collection with more robust data collection methods.

Review of investments

Investments we will review separately as part of our investment strategy. But they are included within scope 3 and will be included in our overall data collection and reporting.

Embedding sustainability

We are:

  • developing a carbon management plan to help us encourage behaviour change and embed sustainability across the IFoA
  • embedding environmental issues in the work of our boards and public policy initiatives

Measuring progress

Being able to track our emissions year on year and to forecast our future emissions will be part of our carbon management approach. This will be reflected in our data collection and additional changes that impact practices less visible within the data collection process.


Working with our Executive and subsidiaries, the IFoA’s Sustainability Board and the Professional Bodies Climate Action Charter will support the IFoA’s aim to meet Net Zero.

We are also becoming supporters of the UN’s:

Related resources

Sustainability hub

Learn about our work on climate change and sustainability with our research, consultation responses, blog posts, and more.
Read more

Climate change statement

Find out more about our commitment to addressing climate change in our work
Learn more