ISO Publishes their Net Zero Guidelines

By on 15 November 2022

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has today published the much-anticipated Net Zero Guidelines to support all actors and organizations to reach their net zero goals.  

In just three months, over 1,200 organizations and experts from across the globe came together to develop a single core reference text for net zero guidance through the ISO platform in an open consensus-led process. This work drew on the existing landscape of net zero standards and initiatives to produce a harmonised basis for net zero guidance.  

The Net Zero Guidelines will support all organizations, including those who develop policies, frameworks, standards or other initiatives on net zero for use by others, so that any organization looking to make or support a net zero claim takes a similar approach regardless of the initiative it is associated with.  

Nigel Topping, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion, said:  

“I am delighted to welcome ISO’s publication of the Net Zero Guidelines and congratulate all those who have worked on them. As we highlighted in the Pivot Point report earlier this year, we need clear, consistent and harmonised global standards on net zero if we are to effectively and rapidly unlock the regulatory environment needed to help Governments meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. These Net Zero Guidelines helpfully build on the Race to Zero voluntary criteria and can be used as a core reference text on net zero to bring global actors into alignment, ratchet up ambition and address greenwashing.” 

Ulrika Francke, ISO President, added: 

“The Net Zero Guidelines will bring much needed alignment on net zero. We are confident, and proud, that these guidelines will be used widely across government and industry to effectively meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and give greater credibility to what net zero means. This publication is a historic milestone in bringing the international community closer to deliver on climate commitments and set the world on the right path for 2050. ISO is determined to increase positive impact worldwide and ensure our Net Zero Guidelines are used with the broadest possible reach." 

Massamba Thioye, UNFCCC Global Innovation Hub, said:  

“Global warming is one of the biggest challenges ever faced by human social, political, and economic systems; to overcome it requires innovation to support both behavioural change and system change. The Net Zero Guidelines provide a common reference point for systems and organisations that will be subject to these transformational forces. This common reference point is expected to encourage the development of climate and sustainability solutions that enable the satisfaction of the core human needs though forward-looking value-chains, aligned with the climate and sustainability goals.”  

Daniel Barlow, Head of Our 2050 World, said: 

“The scale and depth of the climate crisis means we have to collaborate differently. Our 2050 World – and the collective effort of all those taking part in the Net Zero Guidelines – is the type of innovation and acceleration that we need to get the world to net zero in less time. Publication of the co-authored Net Zero Guidelines signals that there is collective appetite for ambitious, joined-up action: instead of asking ‘what should we do about climate action?’, we’re moving to a better question: ‘how fast can we do it?’.” 

The Net Zero Guidelines were developed through the International Organization for Standardization’s International Workshop Agreement (IWA) process, a series of virtual workshops intended to produce final guidelines which reflect global perspectives on reaching net zero. This initiative was made possible through the Our 2050 World collaboration between ISO, the UN Race to Zero and the UNFCCC’s Global Innovation Hub, which has been convened by the UK’s National Standards Body, BSI. 

Policymakers at the national and subnational level, cities businesses, NGOs and others should download the ISO Net Zero Guidelines at 

The Guidelines will be available in English, French, Spanish and Arabic, with further languages to follow. 


ISO: ISO is an independent, non-governmental international organization with a membership of 167 national standards bodies. Through its members, it brings together experts to share knowledge and develop voluntary, consensus-based, market relevant International Standards that support innovation and provide solutions to global challenges. 

Race to Zero: Race To Zero is a global campaign backed by the UNFCCC to rally leadership and support from businesses, cities, regions, investors for a healthy, resilient, zero carbon recovery that prevents future threats, creates decent jobs, and unlocks inclusive, sustainable growth. 

Our 2050 World: Our 2050 World is a collaboration between ISO, the UN Race to Zero and the UNFCCC’s Global Innovation Hub. 


BSI: BSI is appointed by the UK national standards body, and member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the European Standards Organizations (CEN, CENELEC and ETSI). Formed in 1901, BSI was the world’s first national standards body and the convener of Our 2050 World.