Calculate your Carbon Footprint

The carbon footprint is used as the first step in your carbon management processes. It is a tool to help you understand your carbon emissions, identifying the most significant emissions reduction opportunities.


There are recognised standards for calculating a carbon footprint, such as ISO 14064 or the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. Your footprint, given in tonnes of carbon dioxide (tCO2e), shows your company’s emissions for a one-year period.


How to get started: First, from your objectives, identify the scope of the footprint.


Next gather your data for the previous 12 months:
– energy consumption (kWh of electricity or gas),
– company vehicles (miles or litres of diesel or petrol),
– business journeys (miles by air, car, train, bus or taxi),
– materials used (reams of paper or tonnes of raw material)
– and other activities (refrigerant gases, waste, water, hotel stays or deliveries).


Use the data gathered to monitor and manage the activity on an ongoing basis.


Calculating emissions for each activity shows where to focus your attention to reduce emissions.


Like any business management tool, actively using a carbon footprint will help deliver commercial benefit. The companies I work with have identified efficiencies and cost savings (many thousands of pounds of energy or transport costs), improved their market position and won new business, and communicated their achievements to staff and customers.


Many companies report their emissions, along with reduction targets and progress to meeting them. Companies listed on the London Stock Exchange must now include emissions data in their Annual Reports.


While suppliers to larger customers are being asked for their emissions data as part of the customer’s supply chain projects. Have you been asked to report to the CDP? You’ll need good quality data for this.


If you need help calculating your carbon footprint and identifying opportunities for reducing emissions, I can help.



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