Urban Green Live | Achieving science-based net zero (w/ Karl Downey)

The Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) has helped provide companies with a clearly-defined and verified net zero pathway to reduce their emissions in alignment with the Paris Climate Agreement goals. And now, the SBTi is setting its sights on buildings—developing target setting methodologies, tools, and guidance for companies and stakeholders in the sector to set 1.5º aligned decarbonization targets.

Karl Downey is a Senior Technical Manager for the SBTi, and is leading their Building Sector project. On February 15, 2023, Karl joined Urban Green Live to discuss what the SBTi is and how it works, what makes it different from previous and existing standards, and the development and upcoming release of the Building Sector guidance.

Published February 15, 2023

Additional links

SBTi’s Buildings Program

Blog: “Decarbonizing the Building Sector: Opportunities and Challenges”


Karl Downey
Senior Technical Manager, Science Based Targets Initiative

Karl is a Senior Technical Manager for the SBTi, working for CDP. Within the initiative, Karl leads the work to develop emission reduction pathways and guidance for steel and buildings, as well as having led the cement project. His previous experience includes cement industry CO2 strategy and public affairs, emissions trading, GHG accounting & life-cycle assessment and sustainable construction. He is a mechanical engineer with a postgraduate certification in sustainability from the University of Cambridge and he currently lives in Madrid, Spain.

John Mandyck
CEO, Urban Green Council

John joined Urban Green Council in 2018 as its first-ever CEO. He capped a 25-year career as Chief Sustainability Officer for United Technologies Corporation having done business in 53 countries. He’s an Adjunct Professor at the University of Connecticut School of Business and also served as a Visiting Scientist at the Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health. John is the founding chair of the Corporate Advisory Board for the World Green Building Council and a former board chair of Urban Green. He is co-author of the book Food Foolish and has published about sustainability in Harvard Business Review.