Measurement of GHG Emissions

26. okt 2023

Planning and executing the measurement of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is a critical step for organizations seeking to understand their carbon footprint, track emissions, and develop strategies for emissions reduction. 

Steps to plan and execute the measurement process

Define objectives and scope

  • Determine the purpose of your GHG emissions measurement. Are you calculating emissions to meet regulatory requirements, demonstrate sustainability, or set reduction targets? Define the scope (1-3), including which emissions sources to include.

Identify emissions sources

  • Identify all potential sources of GHG emissions within your organization, including direct emissions (Scope 1) and indirect emissions (Scope 2 and Scope 3). Common sources include energy use, transportation, and waste generation.

Data collection

  • Gather data related to each emissions source. This may involve utility bills, fuel consumption records, travel data, production metrics, and other relevant information. Ensure data accuracy and consistency.

Establish emission factors

  • Determine appropriate emission factors for each source. Emission factors represent the amount of GHGs produced per unit of activity or energy use. These factors can be obtained from national databases, emissions inventories, or industry-specific sources.

Calculation methodology

Choose a calculation methodology for each emissions source. Common methodologies include the greenhouse gas protocol, specific industry standards, or guidelines provided by regulatory bodies. Use consistent and accepted methods to ensure the reliability of your calculations.

Software and tools 

Consider using GHG emissions calculation software or tools to streamline the process and ensure accuracy. There are several commercial and open-source software options available.

Data verification and quality assurance

Verify data accuracy and conduct quality assurance checks to minimize errors. Review data inputs, calculations, and assumptions to ensure they are consistent and credible.

Reporting

Prepare a comprehensive report that documents the GHG emissions measurement process. Include a clear methodology, data sources, assumptions, and references. 

Third-party verification

Consider having your GHG emissions report verified by an independent third party. Third-party verification adds credibility and can be important for public disclosure or compliance with specific reporting standards.

Continuous monitoring and reporting

GHG emissions measurement is not a one-time activity. Implement systems for ongoing monitoring and data collection to track changes and improvements over time. If required or desired, publicly disclose your GHG emissions data in accordance with relevant reporting frameworks (e.g., GRI, CDP). This can help build trust with stakeholders and demonstrate your commitment to sustainability.

Set reduction targets

Based on your emissions data, set meaningful GHG reduction targets and develop strategies to achieve them. Continuously assess progress toward these goals. Engage with stakeholders, including employees, investors, and customers, to communicate your GHG emissions data, reduction efforts, and progress.