Gary Davis | Setting the Boundaries

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Presented at the 4th International Conference on Carbon Accounting
25th November 2011
www.icarb.org

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Gary Davis | Setting the Boundaries

  1. 1. ICARB - “Setting the Boundaries”25th November 2011
  2. 2. About Ecometrica Ecometrica is a world leading provider of web based services in greenhouse gas accounting, land use and ecosystem assessment. In numbers: • $1 million annual turnover • 1000 GHG accounts completed by staff members • 200 clients using (and paying for) web based GHG accounting platform Our Impacts • 50 years GHG accounting experience within GHG team • 20 staff; GHG accounting, Remote Sensing and GIS, Developers • 3 software services; Our Impacts, Our Ecosystem, Emissionfactors.com • 2 offices; Edinburgh and Montreal • For more information about Ecometrica please visit www.ecometrica.com • Also check out www.emissionfactors.com to get emission factors
  3. 3. ICARB – “Setting the Boundaries” working group Mission: To answer the following questions: • Why is boundary setting important? • What do we mean by “setting the boundaries”? • What are the standards/protocols and are they being used in practice? • How can ICARB help to make boundary setting easy for organisations in Scotland?
  4. 4. Why the focus on boundary setting? • Boundaries define how a “thing’s” emissions should be measured and are therefore fundamental to all (carbon) accounting • Cuts across all other working groups • Well defined boundaries enable “trust in the numbers” through: • Consistency • Comparability • Accuracy • Transparency • Relevance • Completeness • Communication with/Engagement of stakeholders
  5. 5. ICARB – “Setting the Boundaries” working groupConvened a working group consisting of:1. Workshop based in Edinburgh2. Expert panel with representatives from worlds of govt policy, corporate carbon accounting, reduction and offsetting, financial accounting3. Report back at annual conference4. Make recommendations based on findings
  6. 6. Q. What “things” are we trying to measure?
  7. 7. A. The most common things we measure GHG emissions from are:• Organisations• Products• Services• Events• Buildings (lifetime)• Reduction project• Transport (infrastructure)• Supply chain• Cities• Countries• Energy generation• Govt Policy• Corporate policyEach of these categories has its own set of governing standards
  8. 8. Q. What exactly are boundaries?
  9. 9. A. Boundaries define:• Things• Gases• Organisation• Operations• Allocation (Financial/operational control)• Timeframe• LCA approach• Lifecycle
  10. 10. Q. Are there international standards for settingboundaries?
  11. 11. A. Yes
  12. 12. • Defra – Guidelines for Company Reporting on GHG Emissions* *Ecometrica’s analysts• IPCC – Guidelines for National GHG Inventories* provided input to these• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Protocol* standards• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Project Accounting Standard*• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Scope 3 Accounting Standard*• PAS 2050 – Assessing the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of goods and services*• The CarbonNeutral Protocol*• The Carbon Trust Standard*• Carbon Disclosure Project• Carbon Reduction Commitment• ISO 14064• PAS 2060 - Specification for the demonstration of carbon neutrality• The Climate Registry• Western Climate Initiative (WCI) Cap and Trade Program , North America• Bilan Carbone• Global Reporting Initiative• EU Emissions Trading Scheme• Wal Mart Sustainability Questionnaire• Voluntary Carbon Standard• Clean Development Mechanism• Pan Vivo*• Woodland Carbon Code – UK Forestry Commission• EU technical guide for the calculation of the environmental footprint of companies• EU harmonised methodology for the calculation of the environmental footprint of products
  13. 13. Q. Are the standards used in real life?
  14. 14. A. Yes
  15. 15. Here is the breakdown for the CDP corporatesubmissions for 2010 data kindly supplied by the Carbon Disclosure Project for 2010 reporting year.
  16. 16. Q. Are they being applied consistently?
  17. 17. A. Yes
  18. 18. A. and No
  19. 19. Please explain Two types of consistency: 1. Internal consistency for comparing a single company/product/project and over time – This is well applied – Can measure reductions/increases and be confident in results 2. Between organisation/product etc. – This is very difficult to achieve on “like for like” basis – Most organisations are organised/controlled in very different ways – Same for supply chains – Many standards for accounting a further variable
  20. 20. Q. What can be done to improve boundary setting?
  21. 21. A. Education, Education, Education
  22. 22. What can be done to improve boundary setting?• Lack of understanding of the standards that govern carbon accounting from organisations/entities that are new to it• Confusing and cluttered standards “landscape”• It is possible to navigate this landscape but where would you start?• Could hire a consultant (££££££)• Need to make basic guidance accessible and easy to find• This work is well underway e.g. GHGMI is building an inventory of all standards matched against use
  23. 23. • Defra – Guidelines for Company Reporting on GHG Emissions* *Ecometrica’s analysts• IPCC – Guidelines for National GHG Inventories* provided input to these• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Protocol* standards• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Project Accounting Standard*• WBCSD/WRI – Greenhouse Gas Scope 3 Accounting Standard*• PAS 2050 – Assessing the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of goods and services*• The CarbonNeutral Protocol*• The Carbon Trust Standard*• Carbon Disclosure Project• Carbon Reduction Commitment• ISO 14064• PAS 2060 - Specification for the demonstration of carbon neutrality• The Climate Registry• Western Climate Initiative (WCI) Cap and Trade Program , North America• Bilan Carbone• Global Reporting Initiative• EU Emissions Trading Scheme• Wal Mart Sustainability Questionnaire• Voluntary Carbon Standard• Clean Development Mechanism• Pan Vivo*• Woodland Carbon Code – UK Forestry Commission• EU technical guide for the calculation of the environmental footprint of companies• EU harmonised methodology for the calculation of the environmental footprint of products
  24. 24. What should ICARB’s role in boundary setting be? Our survey said: • Not setting standards • Influencing • “Sign posting” • Specific issues raised by the ICARB group • Case Studies • Marketing • Funding • Education • Liaise with other bodies such as GHGMI, CDP, ICROA; they have offered to collaborate
  25. 25. How can ICARB take this forward? • Establish mission statement – “The Ultimate aim of this Initiative is Consensus, and a universally agreed Language and Hymn Sheet for Carbon Accounting, for all stakeholders, not just the few.” • Set goals , deliverables and timeframes • Take up offers of collaborations from GHGMI, CDP and ICROA • Deliver goals
  26. 26. To summarise • Boundary setting a key part of any carbon accounting activity • There are many standards that govern boundary setting for all aspects of carbon accounting • Universally agreed Language of carbon accounting exists as do many Rule Books • These standards/protocols/rule books are used by most organisations • Organisations that are new to carbon accounting struggle to navigate the standards landscape • Rather than more standards, or the “perfect standard”, we need accessible guidance on how to use existing standards correctly • ICARB is well place to provide this guidance to its member community • Can collaborate with other bodies doing similar work e.g. GHGMI
  27. 27. And finally www.emissionfactors.com• Try it for free• 25% off to all conference attendees• Voucher code = icarb2011• Valid until 31st December
  28. 28. Thank YouContact:Gary Davis, Operations Directorgary.davis@ecometrica.com+44 (0) 131 662 4342

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