Companies road-test greenhouse gas emissions measurement framework

From concept to proof-of-concept: 60 global companies begin testing Greenhouse Gas Protocol framework.

The good news is that this year will bring scads of choices for those of you out there who are seeking to find software applications to help you manage your greenhouse gas emissions data, and other corporate environmental data. The bad news is that you'll have lots of things to sort through, and no clear mandate on whether or not it is necessary to make these investments.

Better, perhaps, then to focus on getting familiar with the process framework you might have to follow.

That's what more than 60 companies are now doing in conjunction with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol Initiative. They're testing out methodologies that converge the Product Life Cycle Accounting and Reporting Standard and the Scope 3 (Corporate Value Chain) Accounting and Reporting Standard. Their input will be used in the final draft of a comprehensive standard framework that is due out in December 2010.

The framework provides processes for assessing and accounting for the impact of the following (in no particular order):

  • End-of-life management
  • Lifetime usage
  • Distribution and retail
  • Production
  • Raw materials acquisition and processing

The thing that's unique about this beta-test (if you want to call it that) is that the pilot companies are applying measurement to their entire value chain, rather than just their own carbon profile. It's a holistic view, if you will. As an IT leader, you need to keep tabs how this framework will be supported by the software you choose to measure your company's emissions.