CSR Digest: Increasingly, leading organizations regard the mitigation of climate change as an important part of their role in society. Climate Change is becoming an ever-pressing matter and its mitigation more and more demanding from all members of society, including businesses and public organizations.
The origins of Climate Change are directly connected to Greenhouse Gas Emissions, which are the product of human activity. A wide range of interested parties regard Climate Change as one of the most important issues of our times and expect businesses to actively prove that they are part of the solution and not part of the problem. The issue of environmental protection is a target of prime importance for businesses and government organizations.
The results from a survey in more than 500 business leaders from China, Germany, India, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States showed the following business attitudes towards climate change: 45% said that climate change was currently a major issue for their business, 59%- believe that climate change will be a major issue for them within 5 years. At the same time, climate change is not high on the list of strategic priorities for many companies. Only 5% named climate change as their top strategic priority and just 11% of business stated that climate change figures as their 2nd or 3rd strategic priority.
According to a study by the Natural Marketing Institute (NMI), almost 90% of the U.S. population believes it is important for companies to not just be profitable, but to be mindful of their impact on the environment and society.
All organizations emit CO2 from operations and production of products. Upon decision to reduce its environmental footprint, an organization must first detect its current impact to the environment. This means, undergoing assessment to calculate the CO2 emissions produced at all levels of the production line or the operation of the organization.
Over 3,000 organizations in some 60 countries from across the world’s major economies measure and disclose their greenhouse gas emissions, water use and climate change strategies through the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). CDP is an independent not-for-profit organization holding the largest database of primary corporate climate change information in the world. This data is made available for use by a wide audience including institutional investors, corporations, policymakers and their advisors, public sector organizations, government bodies, academics and the public.
A most important phase of the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) calculation is the Data Verification of the data collected. Data Verification is the process of evaluating the completeness, correctness, and compliance of a specific data set against the method, procedural, or contractual requirements.
Data verification may be performed by personnel involved with the collection of data or by an external data verifier. In general, the distinction can be made between the person producing the data to be verified and the person verifying the data. An external data verification may be performed by specialized companies upon receipt of data packages to confirm the completeness of the data package. In most of the cases on site visit are required in order to verify all data provided.
Carbon Footprint verification is needed when calculating an organizations or a products carbon footprint as the organization minimize the risk of probability of error when collecting data. Verifying the carbon footprint of a product or an organization is important to ensure it is strong enough to communicate and demonstrate your organization’s positive approach to climate change.
The Centre for Sustainability and Excellence (CSE)- a global advisory firm with activities in more than 18 countries and offices in Chicago, Brussels and Athens, specializing in Sustainability Solutions and Climate Change – has the technical experience to verify carbon footprint for organizations and products in collaboration with myclimate – a non-profit foundation and international initiative with Swiss origins, myclimate is among the world leaders when it comes to voluntary carbon offsetting measures.
By Nikos Avlonas, President & Founder, Centre for Sustainability and Excellence (CSE)
- Climate Change; Moving from Problems to solutions (chimalaya.org)
- Book – Geoinformatics for Climate Change Studies (chimalaya.org)
- Q&A: Debate over Climate Panel Bias (chimalaya.org)
- Environment: Climate change increasing intensity of natural disasters (chimalaya.org)
- Species affected by climate change: to shift or not to shift? (chimalaya.org)
- Chris Huhne: `The Geopolitics of climate change` (chimalaya.org)
- Climate Change Hits Mighty Himalayas (chimalaya.org)
- Ethics and Global Environmental Policy: Cosmopolitan Conceptions of Climate Change (chimalaya.org)
- Climate change is fundamentally sustainable development issue: Chinese envoy (chimalaya.org)
Started in year 2010, ‘Climate Himalaya’ initiative has been working on the mountain and climate related issues in the Himalayan region of South Asia. In the last two years this knowledge sharing portal has become one of the important references for the governments, research institutions, civil society groups and international agencies, those have work and interest in Himalayas. The Climate Himalaya team innovates on knowledge sharing, capacity building and climatic adaptation aspects in its focus countries like Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan. Climate Himalaya’s thematic areas of work are mountain ecosystem, water, forest and livelihood. Read>>