1. What’s a Corporate Carbon Footprint?
A company’s carbon footprint, also known as Corporate Carbon Footprint (CCF), is the total amount of GHG emissions that are directly or indirectly caused by a company’s activities. Calculating the CCF is usually the first step toward carbon neutrality, because it provides clarity on your emissions hotspots. Without visibility on where those hotspots are and how your business activities are contributing, it’s difficult to define realistic climate goals and reduction strategies.
2. What’s included in a CCF?
A Corporate Carbon Footprint covers all direct and indirect emissions related to a company’s activities. This means that emissions across the entire value chain are included. For example, manufacturing companies will include all emissions from sourcing, logistics, use of sold products, and end-of-life disposal.
A CCF is usually calculated for a specific period, such as a calendar year. After that, any changes to the CCF are tracked by reporting periods (e.g., annually, quarterly, etc.).
3. Why should companies measure their carbon footprint? What are the benefits?
A CCF calculation can serve various purposes. It creates the transparency needed to discover your optimal emissions reduction opportunities. It also helps you identify the most relevant climate risks and opportunities for your business.
Measuring and tracking your carbon footprint also signals to stakeholders (investors, customers, employees, etc.) that you are serious about owning your responsibility for environmental impact. And, as regulators and investors increasingly focus on fighting climate change, demonstrating carbon accountability will be critical to long-term business survival. As a case in point, banks and investors representing over $130 trillion in assets are rapidly moving that capital toward decarbonization of the global economy.
4. How do you calculate a Corporate Carbon Footprint?
When measuring the carbon footprint of a business, one of the first steps is to define the scope of consideration. For a CCF calculation, this is largely defined by standards such as the GHG Protocol or ISO 14064.
The basis for calculating a CCF is the data on your business activities. Almost every action and decision made by a company can contribute to carbon emissions, so the more comprehensive and exact this data is, the more accurate your CCF will be. Keep in mind that getting to net-zero is a journey, so the most important thing you can do is take the first step. You can increase the accuracy over time as you learn more.
Collecting data for your CCF
Data from company-controlled activities is typically well-documented and easy to retrieve. This can include things such as energy consumption (electrical, natural gas, etc.) or business travel. By coupling this activity data with the appropriate emission factors, you can estimate the GHG emissions for each activity.
Some data may be more difficult to obtain, such as production or service activities performed by your suppliers. Employee commuter traffic and energy consumption of your products during the usage phase can also fall into this category. Companies are often unaware that indirect emissions from activities like these should also be included in the CCF. Even though these emissions happen outside a company’s direct influence, they are occurring because of decisions made by the company. These activities can represent a significant part of the company’s emissions.
Alternative methods for estimating indirect emissions
While the most accurate method for capturing indirect emissions is to request consumption data directly from employees, suppliers, and service providers, it isn’t always feasible. There are various databases that can help you fill the gap with estimated GHG emissions from common business activities based on widely available data. Examples include Scope 3 resources and databases provided by the GHG Protocol, US EPA, and Impact Institute. Combining data from these resources with key figures from your business, such as the number of employees, materials purchased, sales volume, etc. can help you evaluate your indirect emissions. The accuracy of your CCF will vary depending on the method used. Purely cost-based approaches tend to be imprecise because they rely on sector-wide averages averages and cost data is usually not available for use of sold products and end-of-life disposal. By using purchased material quantities (as opposed to the cost) as the basis for calculating carbon emissions, you can improve the accuracy of your carbon footprint.
How to address product-related GHG emissions
Once you have calculated your CCF and put reduction strategies in place, you can increase the depth of analysis with a Product Carbon Footprint (PCF). A PCF measures your product-related emissions and can leverage the data collection and analyses already established with your CCF.
We can help you measure Scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions across your business in compliance with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol). These are defined as follows:
- Scope 1: Direct (greenhouse gas) emissions occur from sources that are owned or controlled by the company, for example, emissions from combustion in owned or controlled boilers, furnaces, vehicles, etc.
- Scope 2: Accounts for (greenhouse gas) emissions from the generation of purchased electricity consumed by the company
- Scope 3 emissions are a consequence of the activities of the company, but from sources not owned or controlled by the company. Scope 3 activities cover a wide range along a company’s entire value chain, including raw materials, logistics, business travel by the team, and how your employees commute to work. This category often accounts for a large chunk of your overall corporate carbon footprint
5. How can we get Verification Report by your company?
We can help you prepare Verification Report as impartial and objective review of the reported greenhouse gas emissions and removals or the greenhouse gas statement. ITC verifies the Greenhouse Gas Emission Reports prepared according to ISO 14064-1 according to ISO 14065 accreditation standard with its expert staff and report will be accredited by USA IAB Accredited body.