Business Carbon footprint calculation.
Business Carbon foot print calculation and understanding.
So, you want to reduce the impact your Business is having on the environment and by reducing its contribution to climate change.
Some businesses look at this as the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals become their goals. Other do it with an increasing sense of Corporate social responsibility, others do it just because it is the right thing to do.
There are many free Calculators, and we have inserted a few links below.
But before we send you off to another website, it may be useful to get your head around what this all means.
As an individual reading this, you have a carbon footprint, it is nearly unavoidable. Unless you are living off grid and eating by foraging alone with no fire.
Well businesses produce a carbon footprint from the greenhouse gases they generate through facilities operations, web servers, every email that is sent, employee travel, supply chain activities, packaging, sending post, receiving post or goods and even running the computer or phone you are reading this on.
By using a business carbon footprint calculator, you can spot the main carbon emitters that are created by your business, and then work to decrease the environmental damage by both reducing emissions or offsetting them through carbon credits or simply planting trees.
Business Activities That Make Carbon Emissions
Whether you offer services, goods, or products, or build houses or drive a taxi or just work online at home. The main emitters for most businesses are:
- Energy: Energy is the largest emitter of greenhouse gas for businesses.
- Office Facilities: This refers to all of the structural space used by your business including warehouses, public-facing offices, labs, etc. These structures tend to account for most of a business’ carbon emissions because they require energy, water, and gas to function. For instance, a business with just 2,500 square feet of facilities will, on average, produce 25 tonnes of carbon emissions each year (including employees, energy costs, etc.). Okay some sustainable designs in modern building are better, but most buildings still generate a large amount of emissions.
- Employee Travel and Product Shipping: This includes all travel that is done for business purposes, including just getting to work, as well as the carbon emissions produced by deliveries to or from your business whether postal, courier or container. Air travel for business meetings and purposes is another component of a business’ carbon footprint, and land or sea-based transport of goods and products are tough on the planet.
- Capital Expenditures: Like all spending, purchasing desk tops, stationery, company vehicles, equipment, machinery and other long term purchases that will be used for the business all create their own eco-footprint.
- Operational Expenses and Supply Chain Activities: The materials used in the business, wages, and all other operational expenses are included in the business carbon footprint as well.
All businesses have these carbon costs but by using a free business carbon footprint calculator, you can determine the emissions generated by your company, and gain the knowledge necessary to make meaningful advancements towards a more sustainable and environmentally friendly business model.
Using a Free Carbon Footprint Calculator for Business to Measure the Footprint of Your Company
The best way to begin to reduce your company’s emissions is by measuring the Carbon Footprint of your company. This can easily be accomplished by inputting data from your company into a greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions calculator, like the one above. Because the information is calibrated using various sources, it will provide you with an estimation of your business’ GHG emissions. But, the more data you enter increases the accuracy.
To get started, follow these steps:
- Begin by entering the type of business you operate, and the industry sector. <br><br>
- Include the number of employees as well as how many facilities are included in the business. Facilities and employees play a large role in the accuracy of a business carbon footprint calculator. <br><br>
- Collect and enter data about travel activities, Square footage of business space etc<br><br>
- Enter your capital and operating expenditures. , labour, materials, supply chain activities and other operational expenses. <br><br>
- Make sure to include your electricity and other energy costs. The easiest way to do this is by checking electricity and gas and vehicle fuel bills from the past year. <br><br>
- Waste generates greenhouse gas emissions, particularly methane. <br><br>
- Organize all of this information before getting started so you can quickly refer to it while inputting information into a business carbon footprint calculator. <br><br>
Once you have all the necessary data, you should select a business footprint calculator. There are many carbon footprint calculators on the internet, but most are designed to calculate the footprint of an individual. A company’s carbon footprint, however, requires a different sort of calculator.
Because business types vary greatly and different industries generate more carbon emissions than others, look for a calculator that uses the latest data and includes many industry and business types.
One carbon footprint calculator for small businesses or low emitter organisations is the Simplified GHG Emissions Calculator published by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
It’s readily available on their website and is packaged as an Excel file that you can then input your data into during a specific data session.
However, this “simplified” version is a lot like filling out information for Revenue, it can be confusing.
Some immediate opportunities to reduce your company’s eco footprint include:
- Changing how you ship your products.
- Using power installations / metres to limit wasted electricity, solar panels etc
- Introducing climate control systems that turn off systems where no one is working
- Upgrading appliances and equipment, or improving maintenance schedules to prevent power drains
- Implementing a recycling program and other waste reduction strategies
- Going the extra mile and planting trees for business
How a Business can take immediate action
Meaningful reductions of your company’s carbon footprint take time, but Tree Planting programs, especially those that plant and protect native trees and eco systems, offer a great solution.
You just have to be careful to make sure that the tree planting offset program is actually replacing native species and restoring natural ecosystems that will be protected for the long haul, not simply a few decades. IE Native species that will not be harvested at a later date like the Tree planting at Dunsany through IrishTrees.ie
Creating a company that is sustainable and eco-friendly isn’t easy, but consumers are responding to and choosing sustainable businesses that protect the environment.
If and when you have the capacity to measure your Businesses Carbon footprint getting started simply requires measuring your company’s emissions with a carbon footprint calculator and then relentlessly focussing on actions to reduce energy and waste that define your company’s impact on the planet.
But be aware that many Carbon offsets prevent future emissions from occurring, but not all carbon offsets achieve carbon removal. For example, offsetting with a windfarm will reduce energy used to create electricity, but will not remove any carbon from the atmosphere.
In the meantime a simple action to take a step forward is to consider planting trees on behalf of your business, your customers, per order, per project, per day, per month and start making a positive and tangible difference..NOW!
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