New guide on measuring scope 3 emissions

29th April 2013

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The GHG Protocol has published free guidance for businesses on how to calculate greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions from across their value chains

The GHG Protocol, which published an international standard for assessing scope 3 emissions in 2011, has now launched accompanying guidance to help firms estimate GHGs from both suppliers and the life cycles of products.

The guidance expands on the information in the standard. It includes, for example, methods for calculating emissions for each of the 15 categories of scope 3 emissions listed in the standard, such as purchased goods and services, business travel, end-of-life treatment of products and waste generation.

Following a consultation on draft guidance published in 2011, the final guide has been revised to include more detail on the “hybrid method” of calculating emissions for purchased goods and services – where supplier specific data are available for all activities associated with producing the goods.

The new document also gives advice on how to select the most appropriate calculation methods and includes examples of each method and provides more information on assessing emissions related to investments, recycling, and energy from waste.

Hugh Jones, managing director of the advisory arm of the Carbon Trust, which helped to develop the guidance, said: “Scope 3 emissions present the next frontier to not only drive significant carbon reductions but also help future-proof businesses against supply chain risk, through sustainable practices.

“All too often we observe a tendency within companies to prioritise what is easy, rather than what is important, however, we recognise that tackling scope 3 emissions can be a daunting task. We hope this guidance provides a clear roadmap for businesses to venture beyond their boundaries so we can all reap the benefits of more sustainable business.”

The new guidance is available for free download from the GHG Protocol website.

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