Calculate Your Corporate Carbon Footprint – Reduce GHG Emissions and Go Net Zero

December 9, 2022

Corporate Carbon Footprint

Carbon emissions from businesses are a major contributor to climate change. Fortunately, more and more companies are recognizing the need to take action on climate change and are setting ambitious goals to reduce their corporate carbon footprint. If your company is looking to calculate its carbon footprint and develop a plan to go net zero regarding greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, here’s what you need to know:

Table of Contents

What is a Corporate Carbon Footprint?

The carbon footprint of a company is the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions that it produces. These emissions can come from a variety of sources, such as the burning of fossil fuels, manufacturing processes, and employee travel. Calculating a carbon footprint is important for businesses because it allows them to understand and reduce their environmental impact. Companies can disclose their carbon footprints in the Carbon Disclosure Project Database.

ISO 14000

ISO 14000 is an important global benchmark that helps organizations reduce their environmental footprint. The standard provides guidance on quantifying and reporting GHG emissions and removals. Using ISO 14000 can help companies to be more transparent and accountable for their GHG emissions, and to develop strategies for reducing them.

ISO 14064

ISO 14064 is an international standard for the management of greenhouse gas emissions. It helps companies quantify, manage, report on and verify their GHG emissions. The scope of this standard includes identifying risks and managing opportunities, implementing voluntary emission reductions, exploring possibilities in the GHG market, and enacting mandatory regulations. Companies can use ISO 14064 to calculate their carbon footprint based on specific products or with an audit of the calculation process by way of preparation of a Limited Assurance Report in accordance with ISAE 3410. In addition to measuring a company’s carbon footprint, ISO 14064 also helps companies measure progress and make improvements as well as offers assistance in preparing methodologies, interpreting results and preparing reports. To be compliant with ISO 14064 standards for environmental management systems must be implemented and environmental assessments conducted.

GHG Protocol

The GHG Protocol is a voluntary program that helps businesses measure and report their carbon footprints. It divides emissions into three scopes (areas), namely Scope 1, 2 and 3. The protocol requires companies to disclose their scope 1 emissions and offers guidance for scope 2 and 3 emissions disclosure. It also provides eight categories of emissions to be reported, including purchased energy or travel-related activities. The GHG Protocol enables businesses to quantify and report their carbon footprints so they can improve their environmental stewardship.

The Role of Corporations in Climate Change and the Carbon Emission Impact

Corporations have a significant role to play in climate change. They are responsible for the production of infrastructure that emits greenhouse gases, and their use of fossil fuels is one of the leading causes of global emissions. Rick Heede’s work has identified corporations as major contributors to climate change, which has sparked criticism that his approach is oversimplified and naive. However, Heede maintains his argument that corporations share responsibility for climate change, and should not be absolved simply because they do not produce more greenhouse gases than other industries. Ultimately, it is up to consumers to reduce their own carbon footprints in order to help limit corporate contributions towards global emissions and mitigate the effects of climate change.

Sustainability at clickworker

Sustainability at clickworker

As a digital crowdsourcing platform, clickworker is committed to reducing its corporate carbon footprint and mitigating its impact on the environment. To achieve this goal, we have begun to implement several initiatives, including:

  • Encouraging remote work: clickworker has a strong focus on enabling remote work for its employees, which allows them to work from home or any location of their choice. This reduces the need for commuting and eliminates the carbon emissions associated with it, resulting in a lower carbon footprint for the company.

  • Promoting sustainable practices: clickworker has implemented sustainable practices throughout its operations, including reducing paper usage, recycling and reusing materials, and using eco-friendly products. These measures help to reduce the company’s impact on the environment and contribute to a lower carbon footprint.

  • Calculate and act: clickworker took its first steps in measuring and recording our emission levels and planning actions accordingly.

Overall, clickworker’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and mitigate its impact on the environment demonstrate our commitment to sustainability and our desire to play a positive role in addressing climate change.

What are the Benefits of reducing your Company’s Carbon Footprint?

A recent study by CDP found that companies who take action to reduce their emissions can see significant financial benefits, including increased revenue, reduced costs, and improved brand reputation. So what are some of the specific benefits of reducing your company’s carbon footprint?

  • Reduced Environmental Impact

Reducing a company’s carbon footprint is important for many reasons, including reducing energy costs, improving the environment and investing in environmental projects. It can also help to reduce the risk of environmental disasters and create a more sustainable future. Companies can reduce their carbon footprints by improving energy efficiency, consuming renewable energy or buying tons of CO2 in the international emissions market.

  • Reduced Operating Costs

Reducing a company’s carbon footprint can lead to reduced operating costs, due to the decreased energy bills and environmental burden. This can be achieved by investing in environmental projects, such as Selectra’s Gandhi project, or buying tons of CO2 in the international emissions market. Additionally, improving energy efficiency and using renewable energy are further options for reducing a company’s carbon footprint that could lead to reduced operating costs. Small changes to office products may also contribute significantly when aiming for net zero emissions.

  • Increased Corporate Reputation

Reducing a company’s carbon footprint is important for its reputation as it demonstrates environmental responsibility and credibility. Doing so can lead to improved energy efficiency, cost savings, increased transparency, and a foundation for future GHG management strategies. Additionally, accurately measuring and reporting the company’s environmental impact can improve efficiency and transparency. Ultimately, reducing a company’s carbon footprint can help improve its reputation and competitive advantage.

  • Improved Employee Morale

Employees tend to be more motivated and enthusiastic when their company takes steps to reduce its carbon footprint. This demonstrates a commitment from the company to making the world a better place, which can lead to increased morale and engagement. It also shows that employees are valued and that their work is appreciated. Additionally, companies can use reducing their carbon footprint as an opportunity for learning and growth, providing employees with valuable lessons in sustainability they can share with others.

  • Increased Customer Satisfaction

Reducing a company’s carbon footprint can lead to increased customer satisfaction by improving energy efficiency and reducing CO2 emissions, providing a public marketing tool, and allowing for better performance management. This leads to improved transparency and data reliability for stakeholders, improved energy efficiency which will save money, and the ability to develop future GHG management strategies based on the results of the assessment. With these benefits combined, customers can see that their purchases have an impact on the environment, leading to increased satisfaction.

  • Increased Shareholder Value

Reducing a company’s carbon footprint can lead to increased shareholder value by increasing efficiency through better performance management, creating competitive advantages over other companies, and making the company more attractive to investors who appreciate sustainability. It also allows the company to be more transparent about its operations and disclose any relevant information regarding their practices that meet ESG criteria. Additionally, by accurately measuring their emissions and taking measures to reduce them, companies can optimize their GHG emissions and create further stability in order for them to more effectively transform into sustainable businesses.

Carbon Neutral Claim

Cycle of Activities for Carbon Neutral Claims
A simplified illustration of the Carbon Neutral Claims cycle.

There is a 5-step cycle of activities for carbon neutrality claims:

  1. Measure your carbon footprint.
  2. Reduce your emissions.
  3. Offset your remaining emissions.
  4. Monitor and report on your progress over time
  5. Audit and improve your carbon management strategy

Repeat.

How do you calculate your Corporate Carbon Footprint?

As awareness of the issue grows, more companies are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and operate in a more sustainable way. But how do you actually calculate your corporate carbon footprint? Keep reading to find out:

Step 1: Identify business operations that generate greenhouse gas emissions

The first steps in calculating a corporate carbon footprint involve looking at the company’s supply chain, identifying all of their business operations that emit GHG, and using metrics such as liters or gallons to measure fuel consumption. Additionally, it is important for companies to understand any climate-related risks that could impact their business performance, financial situation and reputation. This information should then be used to inform investors and guide their investing decisions.

Step 2: Collect data on the emissions from these operations

The second step in calculating a corporate carbon footprint is to apply an appropriate emission factor to the measured data in order to convert it into emissions.

Step 3: Use an emission factor to calculate the total carbon footprint

The emission factor is used to calculate a corporate carbon footprint. By multiplying the activity data by its corresponding emission factor, organizations can accurately determine their total carbon footprint. The US Environmental Protection Agency defines the emission factor of gasoline as 8,887 times 0,001 metric tons CO2/gallon. Companies need to identify business operations and collect data on those operations in order to calculate a corporate carbon footprint. Additionally, they must determine appropriate emission factors for each operation before performing the final calculation and interpretation of their results. Selectra can help businesses reduce their corporate carbon footprints through consultation on climate-related issue and guidance on emissions reduction measures.

Step 4: Track and Report the Findings

Tracking and reporting the findings of a corporate carbon footprint calculation is important in order to gain an accurate understanding of a company’s emissions. This will enable businesses to make informed decisions about reducing their emissions, identify hotspots and develop long-term climate strategies. Additionally, tracking and reporting progress towards reducing emissions is necessary in order to assess whether or not goals are being met.

Step 5: Take Action to Reduce Emissions

It is important to take action to reduce emissions because of the environmental and societal impacts of climate change, as well as the potential for companies to benefit from decreased costs associated with energy usage and infrastructure. Calculating a company’s carbon footprint and conducting a materiality analysis provides valuable information that can help identify where the biggest reductions can be made. Taking action on reducing emissions allows companies to develop an effective long-term climate strategy which helps keep their emissions under control over time while also potentially saving money.

The 3 Scopes of the GHG Protocol

The GHG protocol is the most widely used international accounting tool for government, business and civil society to understand, quantify and manage greenhouse gas emissions. It provides a comprehensive inventory guidance covering all relevant sources and sinks of greenhouse gases. There are three different scopes which can be used when calculating emissions using the GHG protocol:

GHG Scopes
Greenhouse Gas Scopes 1,2 and 3

Scope 1: Direct Emissions

Direct emissions are those that come directly from a company’s activities. This can include emissions from company facilities and vehicles. These emissions contribute to a company’s carbon footprint.

Scope 2: Indirect Emissions

Scope 2 emissions correspond to indirect GHG emissions that result from a company’s electricity consumption. These emissions are often difficult to measure and track, making it important to include them when calculating a corporate carbon footprint.

Scope 3: Other Indirect Emissions

Scope 3 emissions are those that come from indirect sources, such as waste disposal. They’re important to account for when calculating a company’s carbon footprint because they can make up a significant portion of total emissions.

While direct GHG emissions (Scope 1) and indirect GHG emissions (Scope 2) vary greatly depending on the sector, all companies must account for Scope 3 emissions when calculating their carbon footprint. This is because Scope 3 emissions can have a significant impact on the environment.

Reducing Scope 3 emissions is often challenging, but it’s important to consider all options in order to achieve net zero status. One way to do this is by working with suppliers to improve their manufacturing processes and reduce their own GHG emissions. Another option is to switch to renewable energy sources for electricity consumption. Finally, waste reduction efforts can also help reduce Scope 3 emissions.

Corporate Carbon Footprint - Understanding Scope 1, 2 and 3 Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions
Understanding Scope 1, 2 and 3 Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions – By Susanna Hasenoehrl

How can you reduce your Corporate Carbon Footprint?

As a business, you have a responsibility to operate in an environmentally sustainable way. One of the most important ways you can do this is, of course, by reducing your corporate carbon footprint. Here are 7 tips that can help you:

1. Reduce Energy Use

Corporations can reduce their energy use in a variety of ways, such as adopting green technology, implementing automation, and reducing waste. LED lighting, energy-efficient air conditioning and heating systems, and investing in green infrastructure like solar panels are all great options for reducing energy usage and lowering a facility’s environmental burden. Even small changes can make a big difference when it comes to decreasing the company’s carbon footprint and cost on energy bills. The current energy price crisis is pushing companies to take action towards reducing their overall energy usage.

2. Track for Supply Chain Efficiency

Tracking the corporate carbon footprint is important because it can help businesses understand and reduce their carbon emissions, improve their sustainability efforts, gain a competitive advantage, and improve efficiency and accuracy in data management. Knowing where their emissions come from allows companies to make better decisions about how to reduce their carbon footprint.

3. Eliminate Single-use Plastics

Eliminating single-use plastics is important in reducing a company’s corporate carbon footprint because it reduces waste, costs, and emissions. Reusable replacements are more efficient and cost-conscious than disposable alternatives, which can help to further reduce the amount of waste generated by a business. In addition, these reusable replacements can also help reduce the hauling costs associated with disposing of single-use plastics. By eliminating single-use plastics and switching to reusable replacements instead, companies can significantly reduce their carbon footprints and work towards net zero emissions targets.

4. Calculate and Interpret

Your company can calculate its carbon footprint by calculating Scope 1 and 2, conducting a materiality analysis, identifying hotspots and potential ways to reduce emissions through a hotspot analysis, developing a long-term climate strategy that takes into account added emissions from undisclosed scope 3 categories, and conducting regular monitoring through an annual carbon footprint review. The calculation of the carbon footprint includes emissions from the three excluded categories. To accurately calculate your company’s carbon footprint, you must first determine its scope of activities. Then you must add up the total emissions from all activities measured in tonnes of CO2 or another unit of measure that has been converted into a common unit by using Equation (11), and calculate the added value for each activity using Equation (10). Finally, any negligible effects on emissions can be omitted from your calculation if needed (e.g., activity exclusion).

5. Educate Employees

Employee education is essential for reducing a corporate carbon footprint because employees are the ones who ultimately need to implement changes in order to reduce emissions. Educating employees about the importance of reducing their own carbon footprint, and how their individual actions can make a difference, is an important part of encouraging them to take action. With employee education, businesses can ensure that everyone understands the consequences of their actions on the environment and take steps towards reducing emissions. Implementing an EMS (employee management system) according to EMAS/ISO 14001 can also help reduce a company’s carbon footprint by tracking employee data and ensuring compliance with applicable regulations.

6. Carbon Offset

A carbon offset is a way for businesses to reduce their carbon footprint by compensating for their emissions that could not be avoided. Businesses can purchase or generate carbon offsets through initiatives like renewable energy or green building. Carbon offsets are used to reduce a company’s total greenhouse gas emissions by paying another company to reduce its emissions directly, or through the business’s value chain. Businesses must disclose information on any climate-related risks that likely will have an impact on their business and disclose any goals they have set to reduce risk in order to inform investors.

Carbon Offset

7. Carbon Trading

Carbon trading is a business model that utilizes markets to reduce emissions. It provides a way for businesses to track their emissions reductions and recommends consumption-based accounting over spend-based accounting. Carbon trading allows businesses to purchase emissions credits from other entities that have reduced their emissions, helping them reduce their own emissions and go net zero. The Montreal Protocol was one of the first international agreements on climate and regulates the use of CFCs which damage the ozone layer, making carbon trading an effective way to reduce emissions from businesses. The Securities and Exchange Commission is now requiring companies to disclose their carbon emission levels in order to take action against climate change. Carbon accounting helps large industrial supply chains keep track of their impact on the environment in order to go net zero.

What is carbon trading? | CNBC International
What is Carbon Trading? By CNBC International

Conclusion

Going net zero is a challenge for businesses, but it’s one that’s well worth undertaking. Not only is it good for the environment, but it can also save you money in the long run. By taking the time to calculate your carbon footprint and understand where your emissions are coming from, you can make informed decisions about how to reduce your impact. So what are you waiting for? Get started today!

FAQs on Corporate Carbon Footprint

What contributes to a company's carbon footprint?

A company's carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases that are emitted by the company. These emissions can come from a variety of sources, such as manufacturing processes, office buildings, and employee travel.

How do companies measure their carbon footprint?

Companies measure their carbon footprint with a quantitative analysis that estimates the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions produced by the company over a given period of time. The most common way to express a company's carbon footprint is in metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MtCO2e).

How do corporations reduce carbon footprint?

Corporations can reduce their carbon footprint in a number of ways, such as switching to renewable energy sources, investing in green infrastructure, or implementing energy efficiency measures.

Dieser Artikel wurde am 09.December 2022 von Robert Koch geschrieben.

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Robert Koch




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