Climate Bonds Standard V4.0

Expansion of the Climate Bonds Standard Scheme to Corporate Entity and their SLB Certification ​

Status: Public consultation feedback currently being incorporated, launch set for Q1 2023



1. Current Version: Climate Bonds Standard V3.0

​2. Financing Credible Transitions (White Paper)

3. Transition Finance for Transforming Companies

Public Consultation:

6th September - 4th November 2022 

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Visit our  Database of Certified Bonds


Climate Bonds Market Intelligence is expanding its screening database to SLBs in the coming months.

The draft proposals for the structural expansion of the Climate Bonds Standard and Certification Scheme to certify non-financial corporates (i.e., Corporates providing goods and services in the real economy) and SLBs issued by non-financial corporates are now open for feedback.

Essentially, those corporates that are aligned with 1.5-degree pathways or will be by 2030 will be eligible for certification. 

This includes those whose emissions are already ‘near zero’ and those that are not, so long as the corporate has suitably Ambitious Performance Targets and Credible Transition Plans for the delivery of those Targets, i.e., it is undergoing an ambitious and credible Transition.  

That is, although this work originated from our focus on ensuring credible transitions, and ‘no greenwashing’ as the transition concept and label emerged, these new certification offerings are applicable more broadly than just transitioning corporates and SLBs. 

(link is external)

Key features 

These proposals are built on the foundations of Climate Bonds’ Transition Principles, Transition Categories and Credible Transition Hallmarks detailed in our two papers: 

They have also been informed by a review of all similar frameworks and initiatives tackling the requirements in a credible Transition Targets and Transition Plan, including but not limited to, GFANZ, TCFD, ACT, SBTI, UK one, EU Platform for Sustainable Finance, ICMA’s SLB Principles and Climate Finance Transition Handbook.  

Key features of the Corporate and Corporate SLB certification:

  • Ambition: The goal of transition is to deliver no more than 1.5-degree global warming. This is a key test for eligibility for certification. 
  • Inclusivity:  The collective goal of global net zero emissions will not be met without decarbonising the highest emitters as well as building up low or zero carbon alternatives. Certification is designed to support all transition, provided the goals, the path and the pace are suitably ambitious. 

For this reason:

  1. Corporates and SLBs from all sectors will be eligible for certification (once relevant sector-specific criteria are available). 
  2. Corporates and SLBs from those already on 1.5-degree pathways are eligible for certification as arethose who will align with those pathways by 2030 at the latest (so long as they can demonstrate the ambition of their future Performance Targets and the credibility of their Transition Plan to deliver on those Targets).  
  3. Granular simplicity:  Bridges the gap between existing market guidance tailored specifically to SLBs which have good uptake but are lighter touch in detail[1], and the deeper company-level assessment frameworks available that are more comprehensive but perhaps too complex for wide market uptake.


[1] In particular, ICMA’s Sustainability Linked Bond Principles released in June 2020 



Disclaimer: The Climate Bonds Standard Board operates legally as an advisory committee of the Climate Bonds Initiative Board and oversees the development of the Climate Bonds Standard. Neither the Climate Bonds Standard Board nor any organisation, individual or other person forming part of, or representing, the Climate Bonds Standard Board (together, "CBSB") accepts or owes any duty, liability or responsibility of any kind whatsoever to any issuer which wishes to apply for any of its bonds to be certified under the Climate Bonds Certification Scheme ("Scheme"), or to any issuer whose bonds may at any time be certified under the Scheme or to any other person or body whatsoever, whether with respect to the award or withdrawal of any certification under the Scheme or otherwise. All advice or recommendations with respect to any certification under the Scheme or otherwise that CBSB provides to the Climate Bonds Initiative Board is provided to it in an advisory capacity only and is not to be treated as provided or offered to any other person.