What are the 3 scopes of GHG carbon emissions?

The impact of the industrial revolution has created a climate where pretty much all our activities have an impact on the environment.

We all have our bit to do to help to reduce emissions. This is a challenge, but one that comes with the opportunity for positive transformation.

This is a challenge, but one that comes with the opportunity for positive transformation.

In 2020 the UK was estimated to have over 400,000 jobs in low carbon businesses and their supply chains, with a turnover of £41.6billion.

This is a time of change, supported on 9 May 2023, by the launch of the Net Zero Council, attended by some of the world’s leading banks, energy companies, technology giants and financial firms.

The aim of the Net Zero Council is to support industry to help cut their emissions and develop greener practices. Whether large or small your business has much to benefit from reducing emissions.

Speaking at the launch of the newly established Net Zero Council, Energy Minister Graham Stuart said: “Tackling emissions can make business more energy efficient, improve UK energy security and in turn cut costs and open opportunities.”

We will all benefit from a low carbon revolution. To understand how you can play a part it is important for you to understand how your activities impact on global emissions.

There are three scopes of emissions

Our activities create emissions either directly or indirectly.  

Scopes of emissions refer to the different categories or types of greenhouse gas emissions that are associated with human activities. The scopes were developed by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, a widely recognised international standard for accounting and reporting greenhouse gas emissions.

The three scopes of emissions are:

  1. Scope 1 emissions: These are direct greenhouse gas emissions that come from sources that are owned or controlled by the organisation, such as emissions from burning fossil fuels in boilers or company-owned vehicles.
  2. Scope 2 emissions: These are indirect greenhouse gas emissions that come from the generation of purchased electricity, heat, or steam consumed by the organisation. These emissions occur outside of the organisation's own boundaries, but they are associated with the organisation's activities.
  3. Scope 3 emissions: These are all other indirect greenhouse gas emissions that are not included in Scope 2. These emissions may occur throughout the organisation's value chain, including emissions from the production and transportation of purchased goods and services, employee commuting, and the disposal of waste generated by the organisation.

By accounting for all three scopes of emissions you can geta comprehensive picture of your total greenhouse gas emissions and identify opportunities to reduce your impact on the environment. This information can help you make informed decisions about resource allocation, identify areas for improvement, and track progress towards emissions reduction targets. By doing this you can not only improve the impact that your business is having on the environment but improve the carbon footprint of your supply chain and employees, whilst investing in a green future and potentially saving costs at a time of high costs, particularly those associated with energy.

An emissions audit could open a whole new range of opportunities. There’s no better time to take a look and start future proofing your business.

Carbon Sense have been helping many small to medium size organisations in Cornwall and throughout the UK to calculate their carbon footprint and take manageable steps to reduce their carbon emissions in line with Net Zero targets.

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