Reducing CO2 emissions goes hand in hand with sustainability and has certainly been a popular topic lately. In addition, each individual and company emits CO2. This is also referred to as a carbon footprint or CO2 footprint. Since companies’ footprints are larger than individuals’, this is also a great opportunity to make an impact! This applies specifically to you as a small business owner because sustainability is very relevant for SMEs. What are your company’s CO2 emissions? How can you calculate them? And how do you then reduce them? We will explain it to you!
CO2 is a greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide, which is released into the atmosphere. The atmosphere naturally contains CO2 that absorbs heat. In fact, CO2 is an insulating sheet around the atmosphere that keeps heat in, like insulation boards in homes, for example. When the atmosphere contains more CO2, it absorbs more heat and warms the earth. CO2 emissions therefore cause global warming. Besides CO2, the most common greenhouse gas, other greenhouse gases include methane (CH4) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2).
A carbon footprint, captures the impact an individual or company has on the earth through the emissions it generates. What is important here is that it is not just CO2, but all greenhouse gases. In addition, a carbon footprint not only looks at direct emissions, but also emissions caused indirectly.
Calculate CO2 emissions
Calculating your company’s CO2 emissions can be a complex issue with a lot at stake. For example, which aspects, such as electricity consumption, heating, transport, consumption and business travel, do you include in your calculation? Which scope (how directly are you responsible for emissions) do you look at?
Fortunately, our platform is here to help; Eevery’s CO2 Calculator calculates your company’s relevant CO2 emissions and uses your data to create a corresponding CO2 footprint. The calculated emissions are based on current emission factors, scientific publications, international statistics and scientific estimations. Your CO2 emissions are fully mapped; not only energy consumption, commuting and purchased materials are taken into account, but also consumption and waste.
The CO2 Calculator also takes into account the relevant activities, materials and energy flows generated directly or indirectly in your company. It also calculates greenhouse gas emissions generated by activities and resource use throughout their life cycle. Don’t have all the necessary information? No problem. You can also calculate your CO2 emissions based on scientific estimates. This takes about half an hour.
Reduce CO2 emissions
Once you know how much CO2 your business generates, you can start reducing your footprint. Reducing your emissions can be done in many ways and is unique to each business. Our sustainability platform offers relevant and impactful advice that will help you further reduce your carbon footprint. Want to start now? Here are some directions for thinking:
- Mobility: Do your employees travel by public transport, (electric) car or work from home?
- Energy: What is your energy consumption? Can you reduce it?
- Waste: How much waste does your company produce? Do you separate your waste?
- Materials: Is your packaging made of sustainable materials?
Offset CO2 emissions
Besides reducing your company’s CO2 emissions, you can also offset some of them. Offsetting is the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to balance out emissions caused elsewhere. Basically, it is offsetting emissions to transfer a net climate benefit from one party to another. Since greenhouse gases are released into the same atmosphere, it does not matter where exactly they are reduced. From a climate change perspective the effects are the same: A company either reduces its emissions itself, or it enables the reduction of emissions somewhere else in the world.
Projects that make offsetting possible are: Climate-friendly heating, solar-powered transport, conservation and protection of (rain) forests, clean drinking water treatment plants and plastic recycling. There are many companies that organise such projects, enabling their customers to offset their emissions. They offer offset subscriptions or one-off payments based on your company’s emissions, such as our partner Myclimate.
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