Workday to Support Accelerating the Development of Carbon Removal

We’re proud to announce our new membership with Frontier, an advance market commitment that’s accelerating the development of carbon removal technologies. 

office building with view of green treetops

In this article, we discuss:

At Workday, our values guide everything we do, including our approach to creating a sustainable future. We believe in supporting urgent and meaningful action to address climate change, so we’re transitioning from purchasing traditional high-quality carbon credits to supporting carbon removal. And, today, we’re happy to announce our new membership with Frontier. Frontier is a $1 billion advance market commitment to buy permanent carbon removal. It was founded by Stripe, Alphabet, Shopify, Meta, and McKinsey Sustainability.

As part of our climate strategy, we match 100% of the electricity used at our global offices and data centers with clean, renewable sources, and we provide our entire customer community with a carbon-neutral cloud. In addition, we’ve achieved net-zero emissions across our offices, data centers, and business travel. And, we remain dedicated to helping the world achieve a net-zero future by 2050 by keeping global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels via our science-based emissions reduction targets and support of science-based climate policy. While we’re proud of the work we’ve done already to mitigate our environmental impacts, we know there’s more to do. 

Why Workday Is Supporting Frontier

To avoid the worst effects of climate change, we must not only support carbon reduction but also carbon removal as a critical solution. We’re proud of this strong partnership with Frontier and the other Frontier members and to be alongside other innovators in the corporate sustainability space. 

Carbon removal is critical to stopping climate change. Most climate models agree we need to remove carbon from the atmosphere on the scale of 5-10 gigatons per year by 2050. Less than 10,000 tons of carbon have been permanently removed to date, so to make a difference we must accelerate high-potential carbon removal solutions. Existing nature-based solutions, including reforestation, afforestation, and soil carbon storage, are valuable but will not scale to the size of the problem. New technologies are emerging, but too slowly. Funding is needed to drive these innovations, so they can scale at a faster pace to effectively confront the climate crisis.

Advance market commitment accelerates development of durable carbon removal. Workday is joining Frontier alongside Autodesk, H&M Group, and JPMorgan Chase, contributing a combined $100 million in new funds to Frontier’s advance market commitment. Frontier is bringing on new members, including Workday, to increase demand and spur supply. Pooling corporate funds into an advanced market commitment “derisks” the development of needed technologies, enabling more companies to support durable carbon removal.

Purchasing carbon removal today is the highest-impact use of funds. High costs, limited capacity, and a lack of standards for buying carbon removal mean most organizations donʼt participate. So with limited customers, new carbon removal technologies cannot grow to the scale needed without groups like Frontier and its members paving the way. With Frontier, members indicate how much they want to spend on carbon removal, and the Frontier team manages the rest by targeting technologies that have the greatest potential. 

Being part of this innovation in climate solutions is essential to make a lasting impact and uphold our commitment to our planet.

How Frontier Impacts Climate Efforts and Supports Carbon Removal

Frontier is an advance market commitment that aims to accelerate the development of carbon removal technologies by guaranteeing future demand for them. They’re signaling to researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors that there’s a growing market for these technologies. 

Run by technical and commercial experts who facilitate carbon removal purchases, Frontier aims to create a net new, durable carbon removal supply, rather than compete over what exists today. A range of methods for carbon removal are sprouting up but need significant support, so Frontier members bring more power and funds to scale these efforts. Members who commit funds help spur new technologies and support those with the greatest long-term potential. 

Our Sustainability Strategy and Climate Commitments: What’s on the Horizon

When it comes to our climate commitments, we’re focused on helping create a brighter work day and future for all. In line with our core value of integrity, we’re committed to doing everything we can to take care of people, the planet, and to support our customers on their sustainability journeys. With something as important as the health of our planet, it’s our collective responsibility to reduce our environmental impact. 

Our climate strategy has been:

  1. Focus on emissions reductions. 
  2. Replace fossil fuels with renewables. 
  3. Mitigate residual emissions with the purchase of high-quality carbon credits. 

Just as we’ve worked in innovative ways to reduce and mitigate our emissions, we’re now helping to bring carbon removals to scale. Previously, we’ve supported nature-based carbon removal solutions, including a $1 million investment to scale up two natural climate solution projects focused on mangrove reforestation in Mexico and Kenya. As important as these projects are, the science is clear that nature-based carbon removal solutions will not scale at the pace needed to combat the climate crisis and reach net-zero emissions. Now, to deliver greater impact, we’re moving into the next phase by supporting engineered carbon removal solutions via our membership with Frontier. 

To avoid the worst effects of climate change, we must not only support carbon reduction but also carbon removal as a critical solution.

Shifting from supporting traditional offsets to supporting carbon removal is essential to mitigate climate change. We recognize the power we have as a company to be part of a real advancement  in the climate crisis. And, like all innovation efforts, funding from companies such as ours is needed to push carbon removal technologies to the necessary next stages of development. Innovation is a core value at Workday, so being part of this innovation in climate solutions is essential to make a lasting impact. 

Workday believes in playing an active and collaborative role to address climate change, and our commitment will not waver. We remain dedicated to a more just and equitable world and recognize that funding from businesses can be catalytic in scaling investment in the climate solutions necessary to achieve a just and sustainable 1.5°C future. 

To learn more about how we’re taking action against climate change, check out additional information on our sustainability efforts. If you’re curious about how your company can contribute by becoming a Frontier member, please contact Frontier.

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