When businesses contemplate reducing their carbon emissions, they don’t always know where to begin. After all, the CO2 that is warming our climate is a by-product of burning energy that powers nearly everything.  

Every business everywhere uses fossil fuels in some form. So it’s quite understandable that leaders with the best of intentions are finding it difficult to take control of their corporate CO2 emissions. Without knowing where to begin, inaction is the outcome.  

However, climate warming is turning up the heat on business practices. As a result, investor and customer expectations are rising. For CEOs that want to do good by reducing their carbon emissions, there is scope for action. The scope begins with 1, 2, 3.  

Carbon emissions fall into three categories – Scope 1; Scope 2; and Scope 3.  

Scope 1 carbon emissions are produced when a business directly harnesses energy from burning fossil fuels. The carbon emitted from using natural gas to heat a building or from diesel to run a truck are examples of Scope 1 emissions.  

Scope 2 carbon emissions are produced indirectly when a business harnesses energy from fossil fuels burned elsewhere. The carbon emitted by electricity imported from a power plant that burns coal or natural gas is an example of Scope 2 emissions. 

Scope 3 carbon emissions are the hardest to quantify. This is because they are embedded in the products and services a business buys from others. The carbon indirectly emitted by purchasing parts manufactured by a supplier, and delivered by a third party, would be examples of Scope 3 emissions.  

Reducing corporate carbon emissions begins with tracking and reporting energy use in all its forms. The 5 – 10 top sources for Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 emissions are identified. The sources with the most significant impact become the focus for action, beginning with the sources most easily addressed.  

Short-term targets and milestones ensure that the carbon reduction plan is robust and results. Energy audits and operational reviews help identify potential efficiency improvements. 

Reducing carbon emissions is a challenge but also immensely rewarding. If reducing carbon emissions is on your corporate agenda, contact 360 Energy. Our knowledge and expertise can increase your scope of action and impact.  

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