As we face a growing climate challenge , many business leaders are wondering how to tackle the topic of greenhouse gas emissions. To begin with, why not carry out a carbon footprint ? Here’s why – and how – it’s useful for a business.
What is a company’s carbon footprint?
When we talk about a company’s carbon footprint, we actually think of the sum of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions produced by the latter. Carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, tropospheric ozone, water vapor, methane… The common point of these gaseous components is that they are naturally present in the atmosphere, but also that their concentration increases due, in particular, to human activities.
As their name suggests, GHGs unfortunately contribute to the accentuation of the greenhouse effect. If the latter is a natural phenomenon and necessary for the survival of all ecosystems and species – it keeps the Earth at a stable temperature – its accentuation is at the origin of the phenomenon of global warming observed in recent decades. This phenomenon does not fail to alarm climatologists… But not only… As we can observe through the recent rise of young climate whistleblowers like Greta Thunberg, the entire population is interested and feels concerned by this global warming.
Faced with the threat of climate change, several solutions are available to companies to act at their level . Carried out by service providers certified by the Ecological Transition Agency (Ademe) – we are thinking in particular of Carbon – in collaboration with an interlocutor within the company, the carbon footprint is the step that precedes all the others, because it allows managers to have an idea of the carbon footprint of their activity in order to implement appropriate actions.
Is carrying out a carbon footprint compulsory?
While carrying out a carbon footprint is not an obligation for all companies , article L. 229-25 of the environment code stipulates that a greenhouse gas emissions report must be carried out every 4 years for companies with more than 500 employees . If you are a smaller company or even a startup , here are 5 good reasons to get started in this carbon footprint process :
1) To implement concrete actions
This is the primary objective of a decision maker who has a carbon footprint carried out: the implementation of concrete solutions to improve the carbon footprint of his company . Indeed, making a diagnosis makes it possible to identify the emitting activities … But also to act concretely so that they are less so!
Whether it is about reducing waste , reducing electricity consumption , converting employees to sustainable mobility or reducing the impact of its activities on health, the carbon footprint is an essential tool to help decision making . You will know how to orient your approach, on which subjects to act first… In short, where to start!
2) To involve its employees in the life of the company
A business does not exist without its employees . By involving them in a real eco-citizen approach, the business manager ensures that the measures put in place to reduce the carbon footprint of his organization will be understood and followed , and that everything he will propose for them. encourage them to work, to go to their place of work, or to consume energy otherwise will have a resonance. Crabo proposes, for example, to provide employees with an application to monitor their personal carbon footprint and / or by department or work group .
In addition, undertaking this process also contributes to improving the employer brand of a company: when applying for a job offer, we generally want to join a company that places the environment at the center of. its concerns than the reverse.
3) To achieve significant financial savings
According to the 2019 edition of ” Key climate figures ” published by the Ministry for the Ecological and Inclusive Transition, 47% of CO2 emissions produced in the world in 2015 came from electricity production and the energy sector. A figure that says a lot about the importance for companies to reduce their energy consumption… which beyond the certain benefit for the planet, can represent significant financial savings for companies .
To regain control of his energy consumption , and therefore the amount of his bill, a business manager can explore various avenues, including the best management of interior and exterior lighting according to the presence of employees, limitation of equipment energy intensive such as printers or multifunction devices, the fight against energy loss through the installation of automatic doors, or the use of compressed air devices for industry. For more details, Ademe lists them on its website and even offers sections adapted to each sector of activity.
4) To communicate your action to the public
Implementing measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions also means having concrete information available on which to communicate to the general public .
We know, for example, that a product or service today has a better chance of winning the favor of customers when it is produced in a respectful way – of the environment, of course, but also of those who produce it and of those who consume it. By committing to this and making it visible in his communication , a leader gives his company more chances to differentiate itself from those which do not undertake this kind of approach. Company managers, do not hesitate to carry out your certified carbon footprint .
Be careful, however: to be effective, a communication focused on the eco-citizen approach of a company must be based on the implementation of concrete and high-impact actions … Otherwise, there is a risk that it will be accused of “ Greenwashing ”, ie using ecology and the fight against global warming to promote oneself without really committing.
5) To have arguments when it comes to finding funding
While carrying out a carbon footprint is inexpensive – Adele’s subsidies cover between 50 and 70% of the costs of the operation depending on the size of the company – it allows for arguments strong with banks or investors when requesting financing when necessary. A win-win approach!
Questions about the management of your business or your balance sheet ? Do not hesitate to call on one of our Wity advisers on Mazing US! When it comes to your company’s carbon footprint,
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