Grasping the nettle on Scope 3

Grasping the nettle on Scope 3

It’s hoped COP26 is a time for more than talk but ambitious climate action. Our CEO Mauro Cozzi hopes that one of those actions will be the end of creative carbon accounting, as he shared with Policy Exchange’s Environmental Affairs Magazine.

What is creative carbon accounting? Voluntary disclosure and reporting of emissions leaving room for blurred lines and incomplete carbon footprints. Many companies report accurate measurements of direct emissions (Scope 1 and 2), but few account accurately, if at all, for emissions released outside their control (Scope 3). 

To be Paris-aligned and set realistic reduction targets, corporate carbon accounting should accurately reflect the total emissions footprint, including the entirety of the value chain.

The good news is that managing Scope 3 is achievable. Over 85% of the emissions that Emitwise tracks for our customers are in Scope 3, and over 3,000 companies report Scope 3 emissions under the CDP.

Machine learning platforms like Emitwise can absorb the vast complexity of labyrinthine supply chains and use algorithms to analyse data on procurement, logistics, and products, arming companies with the information and insights to collaborate with suppliers to reduce emissions.

If net zero is the goal, we need to stop taking an à la carte approach to carbon accounting, with companies, governments and investors thinking of it as a set menu of scope 1, 2 and three emissions.

You can read the full article in Policy Exchange’s Environmental Affairs Magazine.