SMARTargets

SMARTargets Logo

SMARTargets is a research project of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), with the objective to develop a new methodology for companies to set GHG emissions reduction targets that are grounded in the relevant science, actionable in terms of cost-effectiveness and risk management, and aligned with the global goals of limiting warming to well below 2°C and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C, as stated in the Paris Agreement. 

The project was initiated after EPRI research found that the existing target setting methodologies and benchmarks were not well-grounded in the relevant science, and not facilitating practical company targets, transition risk management, and cost-effective decarbonization. EPRI's technical insights and principles represent the foundation for a well-grounded company target setting methodology and validation alternative. 

The project team consists of EPRI researchers and experts who have extensive experience and knowledge in the fields of climate science, target setting, validation, disclosure, reporting, and stakeholder engagement. The project is developed in collaboration with participants from the electric, gas and transmission and distribution utility sector, from different regions, who provide data, feedback, and input to the methodology. The project also involves a Stakeholder Advisory Coalition, composed of representatives from finance, trade, standard-setting, environmental and other industrial sectors organizations who provide guidance and dialogue to the project. The project includes outreach activities to educate on the relevant science for GHG target setting and, once completed, share the methodology with the wider public and stakeholders. 

Project Brochure

SMARTargets™ offers companies a methodology for grounded and actionable climate targets aligned with global goals.

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Public Event Webcast

On Thursday, January 31st, we held a public event to introduce SMARTargets™—a new project developing a methodology for grounded and actionable company climate targets aligned with global goals.

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Press Release

Epri launches collaborative project for developing grounded and actionable company climate targets aligned with global goals

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The benefits of the project include: 

  • A new methodology and validation option for practical, grounded, defensible targets.

    • Derived from scientific principles.

    • A grounded, comparable process, not arbitrary, prescribed numbers

    • Insights that inform evolving disclosure and reporting activities and decision-making

  • Scientific education for participants.

  • Collaborative forum for sharing, learning, and discussing.

  • Stakeholder Advisory Coalition for stakeholder input and dialogue

  • Outreach for scientific education and methodology sharing.

About Us

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) is a nonprofit organization that conducts research and development on electricity generation, delivery, and use. EPRI's mission is to benefit the public by enhancing the quality of life, the environment, and the economy through the use of electricity. To learn more about EPRI visit our institute website.

EPRI has decades of relevant and recognized scientific expertise, including in climate scenarios, energy and economic transformation, climate risk, climate change mitigation, policy evaluation, and sustainability, as well as research community leadership and expert participation in the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), U.S. National Climate Assessment (NCA), and on the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) Advisory Group for Scenario Guidance.

EPRI has conducted research on target setting and climate risk informing and educating companies & stakeholders for years. 

Meet the project co-leads:

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Steven Rose, Ph.D.

Dr. Steven Rose is a Senior Technical Executive at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and a co-leader of the SMARTargets project. He has over 20 years of experience in conducting research and analysis on climate change and energy issues, with a focus on climate scenarios, socioeconomic transitions, climate change and management, and climate risk assessment. He is a recognized scientific expert, having served as a lead author or contributor to several major scientific assessments and reports, such as the National Academy of Sciences, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board, the National Climate Assessment, the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures, and the U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Program. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Cornell University, and a and a BA in economics with mathematical emphasis from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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Claudia Octaviano, Ph.D.

Dr. Claudia Octaviano is a Principal Technical Leader at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and a co-leader of the SMARTargets project. She has over 15 years of experience in developing and applying systems modeling tools to support decision making on climate mitigation and adaptation, energy policy, and environmental management. She is a policy expert, having worked as a consultant and advisor for various national and international organizations and governments, such as the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the United Nations Development Programme, the Mexican Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Mexican Ministry of Energy. She has extensive experience in NDC target setting, stakeholder engagement, international negotiations, carbon markets, and economy-wide decarbonization. She holds a Ph.D. in Systems Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an M.S. in Environmental Science from Yale University, and a BA in Economics from the Monterrey Institute of Technology in Mexico.

Morgan Scott

Morgan Scott

Morgan Scott is a Senior Project Manager at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and a co-leader of the SMARTargets project. She has over 10 years of experience in leading and managing sustainability initiatives and programs, with a focus on ESG reporting and disclosure, sustainability goals and indicators, and stakeholder engagement. She is a sustainability leader, having led or co-led several innovative and impactful projects and activities, such as the Climate READi launch, the Equitable Decarbonization Initiative, the Understanding Climate Scenarios and Goal Setting Activities, and the Strategic Sustainability Science Program. She holds an M.S. in Sustainability Management from Columbia University.

SMARTargets is a research project within the Energy Systems and Climate Analysis Group and the Environment and Sustainability area.

Methodology Development

The SMARTargets project aims to develop a new methodology and validation option for companies to set GHG emissions reduction targets that are scientifically sound, practical, and aligned with global goals. The need for such a methodology is evident, as companies worldwide face the challenge of setting and achieving GHG targets that also consider climate risk needs, such as transition risk, physical risk, and liability risk. The SMARTargets methodology will be developed during 2024, following a rigorous and process. 

EPRI research has found the following 5 elements to be key for a practical and grounded GHG target setting methodology.

Methodology Development

SMARTargets Public Webcast

Watch the SMARTargets project Public Launch Event, a research project that aims to develop a new methodology for setting GHG emissions reduction targets that are grounded, actionable, and aligned with global goals!

The public launch of the SMARTargets project will took place on: Wednesday, January 31, 2024, from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM (EST), via WEBEX. The public launch will feature the following agenda:

  • Welcome and introduction by EPRI.

  • Overview and background of the SMARTargets project.

  • Panel with participating companies and stakeholders.

  • Q&A session.

  • Closing remarks and next steps by EPRI.

Publications and Additional Resources

The SMARTargets methodology is currently under development and will be published free to the public in EPRI website once it is completed. The publications section of the project website will also highlight the methodology and its related publications, such as reports, papers, presentations, and blogs. You can check the publications section regularly to stay updated o.n the latest news and events of the project, as well as the best practices and standards in the field

Relevant EPRI publications and background research:

Assessment of new global emissions scenarios for company low-carbon transition risk and target setting applications

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Quantifying sub-global socioeconomic uncertainty for global greenhouse gas emissions pathways

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Differences in Regional Decarbonization Opportunities, Uncertainties, and Risks

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Developing Local Climate Change Information: Steps and Illustrative Analysis

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Grounding Climate Risk Decisions: Physical Climate Risk Assessment Scientific Foundation and Guidance for Companies

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Developing Company Emissions Reduction Targets Based on Science, and Reflections on SBTi: Key Insights

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Annex III: Scenarios and Modelling Methods. In Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change

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Technical Considerations for Climate-Related Risk Disclosure Rules

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EPRI Public Comments on the SEC’s Proposed Climate Risk Disclosure Rule: The Enhancement and Standardization of Climate-Related Disclosures for Investors

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Opportunities for Decarbonizing Minnesota’s Economy: Energy System Supply and Demand Assessment

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EPRI Public Comments on Federal Acquisition Regulation ANOPR: Minimizing the Risk of Climate Change in Federal Acquisitions

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Climate Disclosure and Voluntary Reporting Trends: 2020 Activity Survey Results

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Review of 1.5°C and Other Newer Global Emissions Scenarios: Insights for Company and Financial Climate Low-Carbon Transition Risk Assessment and Greenhouse Gas Goal Setting

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EPRI Comments on Moody’s “Proposed framework to assess carbon transition risks for electric power companies”

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Climate Disclosure and Voluntary Reporting Trends: 2019 Survey Results

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Climate Disclosure and Voluntary Reporting Trends: 2018 Survey Results

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The Challenge of Setting Company Climate Goals

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Grounding Decisions: A Scientific Foundation for Companies Considering Global Climate Scenarios and Greenhouse Gas Goals

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A Technical Foundation for Company Climate Scenarios and Emissions Goals

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Social Cost of Carbon Pricing of Power Sector CO2: Accounting for Leakage and Other Social Implications from Subnational Policies

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IAMC 1.5°C Scenario Explorer and Data hosted by IIASA. Integrated Assessment Modeling Consortium & International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

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