Do you know what Scope 2 emissions are? If not, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Many people have never heard of Scope emissions before, but they are a very important topic. In this blog post, we will discuss what Scope 2 emissions are and why they are important. We will also provide tips on how to reduce your own Scope 2 emissions.
- What are Scope 2 emissions?
What are Scope 2 emissions?
There are two main types of greenhouse gas emissions: Scope 1 and Scope 2. Scope 1 emissions (called direct emissions) are those that come directly from a company’s activities, such as burning fossil fuels to power machinery. Scope 2 emissions, on the other hand, are indirect emissions that result from purchased electricity or heat from another organization. In order to calculate a company’s total carbon footprint, both types of emissions must be taken into account.
Scope 2 emissions can be further divided into two categories: market-based and location-based. Market-based Scope emissions occur when a company purchases electricity from the grid. Location-based Scope emissions, on the other hand, happen when a company produces its own electricity but uses dirty energy sources, such as coal. In order to accurately track and report their emissions, they need to understand which category their company’s greenhouse gas emissions fall into.
The problem with Scope 2 emissions is that they account for a significant portion of total emissions but there’s no easy way to reduce them. For example, a company might switch to using renewable energy but that doesn’t do anything to reduce the emissions from the power plant itself.
The good news is that there are some innovative technologies being developed that could help to reduce Scope 2 emissions. One example is carbon capture and storage, which is a way of capturing carbon dioxide from power plants and storing it safely underground. If this technology can be commercialized, it could make a big dent in Scope 2 carbon emissions.
In the meantime, the best way to reduce Scope 2 emissions is to focus on reducing overall electricity consumption. This can be done through energy efficiency measures and by switching to renewable energy sources such as renewable electricity. While it might not be easy, reducing Scope 2 emissions is essential for fighting climate change.
Why are Scope 2 emissions important?
Scope 2 emissions (indirect emissions) are important because they represent the indirect emissions from the consumption of electricity, heat, or steam. Unlike Scope 1 emissions, which come from direct sources like company vehicles or on-site generators, Scope 2 emissions come from the electricity used by a company. While Scope 1 emissions are under the direct control of a company, Scope 2 emissions are often out of their control.
However, companies can influence their Scope 2 emissions by choosing to purchase renewable energy or investing in energy efficiency. Additionally, many governments and organizations now require companies to report their Scope 2 carbon emissions as part of their commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, Scope 2 emissions have become an important part of the conversation about climate emergencies.
How can you reduce your own Scope 2 emissions?
While Scope 1 and 2 emissions both need to be addressed in order to combat climate change, reducing Scope 2 emissions is often seen as more challenging than reducing Scope 1 emissions. This is because Scope 2 emissions are indirect and often out of a company’s direct control. However, there are still many steps that companies can take to reduce their Scope 2 carbon emissions, such as:
1. Purchase renewable energy
One way to reduce your Scope 2 emissions is by purchasing renewable energy. Renewable energy comes from sources that are constantly replenishing, such as the sun, wind, and water. Unlike fossil fuels, which release harmful emissions when burned, renewable energy sources produce little to no pollution.
As more businesses and individuals switch to renewable energy, the demand for these cleaner sources of power will increase, helping to drive down prices and speed up the transition away from dirty fossil fuels. In addition to reducing emissions, renewable energy also offers other benefits, such as greater energy security and lower costs. So, if you’re looking for a way to shrink your carbon footprint, purchasing renewable energy is a great place to start.
2. Invest in energy efficiency
Another way to reduce your Scope 2 emissions is to invest in energy efficiency. This can mean anything from upgrading to energy-efficient appliances to insulating your home or office. Not only will this save you money on your energy bill, but it will also help to reduce your carbon footprint.
In addition, investing in renewable energy sources such as solar or wind power can also help to offset your Scope 2 emissions. By taking steps to reduce your energy consumption, you can make a positive impact on the environment and limit your contribution to climate change.
3. Switch to low carbon fuels
You can reduce your Scope 2 emissions by switching to low-carbon fuels. Low carbon fuels are those that produce fewer emissions when burned. This can include natural gas, propane, and even electricity. Switching to low carbon fuels can help to significantly reduce your emissions, and it can also help you save money on fuel costs.
In addition, low-carbon fuels are often more efficient than traditional fossil fuels, meaning that you’ll get more energy for your money. As the world moves towards a low carbon future, switching to low carbon fuels is an essential step for reducing your emissions.
4. Support carbon capture and storage projects
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is a process of capturing waste carbon dioxide (CO2) from large sources, such as power plants, and storing it in underground reservoirs. CCS has the potential to prevent the release of billions of tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year. In addition, CCS can also be used to enhance oil recovery. By injecting CO2 into oil reservoirs, it is possible to increase the amount of oil that can be extracted. As a result, CCS projects have the potential to both reduce emissions and support the development of cleaner energy sources.
Each of these options comes with its own set of challenges, but reducing Scope Two emissions is essential for fighting climate emergencies.
Reducing Scope 2 emissions can be a daunting task, but it’s essential for combatting climate change. There are many ways to reduce your emissions, from investing in energy efficiency to switching to low carbon fuels. By taking steps to reduce your carbon footprint, you can make a real difference to the environment.
What are Scope 3 emissions?
Scope 3 emissions are those indirect emissions that result from activities related to the organization, but which occur outside of the organization’s direct control. Examples of Scope 3 emissions include the indirect GHG emissions of greenhouse gases from employees commuting to work, waste generated by customers, or the embodied emissions of an organization’s products. While Scope 2 emissions can often be reduced through operational changes, Scope 3 emissions may require changes to business models or engagement with stakeholders regarding upstream and downstream emissions in the supply chain. As such, Scope 3 emissions can present a significant challenge for organizations seeking to reduce their climate impact.
How do greenhouse gas emissions impact the value chain of a company?
GHG emissions can have a significant impact on a company’s value chain. The value chain is the series of activities that a company performs in order to create and deliver a product or service. These activities can be divided into four main categories: upstream operations (such as raw materials procurement), production, distribution, and customer service, all of these activities produce GHG emissions. Scope emissions can impact any or all of these activities, depending on the scope of the emissions. However, in general, GHG emissions can increase costs, damaged reputations, and create regulatory compliance risks. Therefore, it is important for companies to understand their GHG emissions footprint and how it affects their value chain.
Do individuals have indirect emissions?
Individuals have indirect emissions associated with the corporate value chain and supply chain of the products and services they consume, as well as the indirect emissions from their own operations. Other indirect emissions may include those associated with transportation, waste, and land use. While individuals may not have direct control over these emissions, they can influence them through their choices about what to buy, how to live, and how to travel. Reducing indirect emissions is an important part of mitigating climate change. To reduce their impact, individuals must stop burning fuel, use electric vehicles, and learn about waste disposal, fuel combustion, and industrial processes.
What is the role of purchased electricity in carbon emissions?
Purchased electricity refers to the acquired electricity by a business or organization from an external source, such as a power company. The electricity consumed by the business or organization will generate carbon emissions, depending on the fuel mix of the power company. For example, if the power company uses coal to generate electricity, then the emissions from purchased electricity will be higher than if the power company uses renewable energy sources. The GHG Protocol Scope accounting tool allows businesses and organizations to account for their emissions from purchased electricity. Businesses and organizations can report their total emissions from Scope 1 (direct), Scope 2 (indirect), and Scope 3 emissions (other indirect) sources.
Research & Curation
Dean Emerick is a curator on sustainability issues with ESG The Report, an online resource for professionals focusing on ESG principles. Their primary goal is to provide resources to help middle market companies, SMEs and SMBs transition to a more sustainable future.