Emmisions reporting methodologies/initiatives: how to gather all the good intentions into just one rule book?

S. Toma, P.J. van der Sterre

During the past few decades, human society has come to realize that it must deal with a serious problem: the accelerated degradation of the natural ecosystem and resource depletion caused by anthropic activity. Thus, the new paradigm of sustainable development gained the attention of governments, companies and consumers around the world. Amid the large spectrum of sustainability related measures, reducing the level of poisonous gas emissions stands as a significant and immediately actionable lever to limit the pace of negative climate change patterns. In theory, all that companies need to do in order to manage the level of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is follow a simple three step process: measure – report – reduce. And then, repeat the cycle. Reality however tells a different story. A growing number of methodologies flock to assist companies in translating their activity into emissions. Next comes a noisy choir of initiatives whose members each claim that it is the most relevant loudspeaker to the business and consumer audience already fearful of “greenwashing” (unsupported sustainability claims). It is thus hardly surprising that, while companies try to run in all these measurement/ reporting races, the last step of the cycle – emission reduction - is in danger of receiving the least amount of attention.

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