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New report reveals that the majority of Swiss publicly traded companies report on Scope 3 indirect Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Published on 12/11/2015, 10:13 AM
Sustainability consulting firms Quantis and BSD Consulting announce the release of the report “Indirect Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Switzerland”. The report is based on a study mandated by the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) to research the status of Swiss companies’ indirect Greenhouse Gas Emission (GHG) measurement and reporting activities. The research was launched to gain a clear understanding of whether or not Swiss companies were reporting GHG emissions and if so, how they were reporting this environmental impact indicator. The report also delivered concrete recommendations to the FOEN so the agency can better support Swiss companies’ measurement and reporting initiatives.
Pioneers from Publicly Traded Companies
The number of companies measuring indirect GHG emissions from their value chain activities has increased in recent years. This evolution has been witnessed both globally and in Switzerland. Previously, most companies reported solely on the GHG emissions originating from within their premises (often referred to as Scope 1) and from their electricity and district heat consumption (Scope 2). The move to include indirect emissions (Scope 3), those that originate from the entire value chain has increased companies’ understanding of its impacts - both upstream and downstream.
"Companies that measure indirect GHG emissions have the advantage of getting the full picture of their value chain and a clear, hot-spot understanding of where their true impacts lie, whether that be from an organization or from a product perspective", Quantis Zürich Managing Director Rainer Zah explains. "This, in turn, helps firms make fact-based and informed decision about how to efficiently allocate resources and engage their supply chain to reduce climate impacts."
The FOEN study delivered a clear understanding of the current status and possible gaps in the reporting of indirect emissions throughout the value chain of Swiss companies. The study identified 126 companies for which Scope 3 reporting is likely. From this sample, 72 companies (57%) calculated Scope 3 indirect emissions. Most reported in accordance with the internationally recognized standard for the assessment of indirect emissions, the GHG Protocol, which suggests 15 Scope 3 categories.
The pioneers of Scope 3 reporting are especially large, publicly traded firms – primarily from the financial and chemical sectors; however, the sectors are disproportionately represented.
Recommendations for pragmatic support to Swiss companies
The study shows that indirect GHG emissions in many sectors are so significant that they should systematically be included in climate-protection measures; therefore, Quantis and BSD put forth recommendations to the FOEN to further engage Swiss companies to measure and report Scope 3 emissions.
"For Scope 3 reporting to become common practice, efforts have to be made on different levels", BSD Consulting Managing Director Peter Teuscher explains. "While incentives and requirements from public policy certainly could boost reporting practice, methodological support for reporting companies is also needed."
Improved measurement and reporting efforts calls for more comprehensive and reliable data. The standardisation of reporting and calculation methods will also help companies. While the GHG Protocol has become established as the internationally recognized methodical reference, there are still major differences in the implementation of the calculation methodology of the GHG Protocol.
Recommendations to the FOEN also include: increasing incentives and awareness of reporting, communicate on business cases from the private sector to motivate companies to report on GHG emissions, and support tools for systematic reporting such as guides and calculation tools.
The “Indirect Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Switzerland” executive summary (in English, French & German) as well as the full report (in German) are both publicly accessible on the FOEN website here : http://www.bafu.admin.ch/klima
Quantis is a global leader in sustainability and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) expertise, services, consulting and tools. Quantis is specialized in supporting companies as they measure, understand and manage the environmental impacts of their products, services and operations. Fuelled by its close ties with the scientific community and its strong track record with clients, Quantis has proven experience in supporting clients as they transform LCA results into business strategies and operational action plans.
Quantis counts some of the world’s sustainability leaders as its clients: Danone, Nestlé, Bayer, Unilever, Kraft, L’Oréal, Total, Michelin, Pfizer and the European Commission, for example.
Quantis has offices in Switzerland, Germany, France, the US, and counts some internationally renowned LCA and sustainability experts among its team members.
To learn more about Quantis, visit www.quantis-intl.com
About BSD Consulting
BSD Consulting is a leading consulting firm for sustainable business development. Since 1998, BSD Consulting has supported a wide range of organizations in evolving their strategies and operations. BSD Consulting’s headquarters are in Zurich, Switzerland, and offices in Berlin, Barcelona, Lisbon, São Paulo, Santiago de Chile, Lima, Quito, Bogotá, Mexico DF, Miami und Shenzhen. We have over 70 employees worldwide.
BSD Consulting focuses on multiple capital value creation by integrating sustainability in strategy, processes and company culture. The core skills of BSD are in the areas of strategy, communication, stakeholder engagement, non-financial reporting and sustainable supply chain management. BSD provides capacity building offers and fosters close links to research institutes, NGOs and public institutions.
For further information : www.bsdconsulting.com
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