by Jo Hanslip
One of our business objectives for our trading year in 2021 was to prepare a Carbon Neutral Plan and motivated by COP 26, we are pleased to have commenced our journey….
Our first challenge is how to become more efficient and as such can we:
- Identify efficiencies that can pay for themselves
- Examine our resources and buildings
- Examine what ‘green’ alternatives exist to us
- Review and simplify our entire supply chain
- Determine what emissions are unavoidable?
- And consider whether carbon offsetting is an option to us
In looking at the process of reviewing our carbon footprint and examining the ways in which we can works towards neutrality, we have reviewed the Carbon Neutral Protocol (https://carbonneutral.com/the-carbonneutral-protocol). This is a useful geode which has been prepared to offer businesses a framework from which to take action to address their carbon emissions and impact upon climate change.
Having reviewed the Carbon Neutral Protocol, there are five stages in progressing a Carbon Plan which we have started to explore within the business.
These stages include:
Stage 1 -Define
We will look to address the way in which the Company operates and see how and in what areas we can be carbon neutral; and identify the principal sources of our carbon emissions – be that travel or means of working. We will look at the benefits/not of the various options for change available to us.
Stage 2 – Measure
We will look to measure the emissions that we generate and examine how we might over time, secure carbon neutrality certification.
Stage 3 – Target
We will look to identify a target by which time we can look to be carbon neutral.
Stage 4 – Reduce
We will identify a programme and timeline for reducing our emissions, and see what changes to our operations will be required to achieve carbon neutrality.
Stage 5 – Communication
We will develop our communication strategy with our team, internal and external stakeholders, and work with them to communicate our carbon neutral plan.
In preparing our Plan, we will also need to look at our operational and financial criteria, including:
- Our energy use
- Waste generation
- Travel behaviours
- Return on investment
- Cost and benefit in terms of carbon reduction gain
- Cumulative result of our actions
As such we are reviewing our operational behaviours and defining our key sources of carbon generation; engaging with our team to see how we can make operational changes to benefit our clients and the planet; and identifying the benefits/not of the options available to us.
Our journey and contribution to ensuring we have a cleaner greener planet has just begun, but we are excited about where we are heading….