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What are scope 3 emissions?

Scope 3 emissions refer to indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that are a result of activities that are not directly owned or controlled by a company, but are a part of its value chain. These emissions can include those from the production and disposal of a company's products, as well as emissions from the use of its products and services, and from the employee commuting, business travel and waste generated by the company. Examples of scope 3 emissions include emissions from the extraction of raw materials, emissions from the transportation of goods, and emissions from the disposal of waste, emissions from the use of purchased goods and services, and emissions from the investment portfolio.


Measuring and reporting on scope 3 emissions is important for companies as it allows them to understand their complete carbon footprint and identify opportunities for improvement throughout their entire value chain. This is particularly important as companies are increasingly looking for ways to reduce their environmental impact and align with the goal of achieving a decarbonized economy.


There are several methods for measuring and reporting scope 3 emissions, including the use of data from suppliers, industry-specific emissions factors, and life-cycle assessment (LCA) approach. Advanced methodologies such as the "consumption-based accounting" is also increasingly used which it enables companies to assign emissions to the consumption of goods and services, rather than the production of them. This method allows companies to understand and account for emissions that occur as a result of their consumption, such as emissions from the use of purchased electricity, or emissions from the use of products and services.


Additionally, companies can also use "input-output analysis" which it is a method that traces the interconnections between different sectors of the economy and how they affect emissions. This method allows companies to identify the emissions that occur in their supply chain and understand the emissions intensity of the products they purchase.

In addition to these methods, companies can also use tools such as carbon footprint calculators and software to measure and report their scope 3 emissions. These tools can help companies to identify the major sources of emissions in their value chain and track their progress in reducing them over time.


Furthermore, companies can also take action to reduce their scope 3 emissions by implementing sustainable procurement practices, such as choosing suppliers that have lower emissions or implementing sustainable packaging and transportation. They can also invest in renewable energy and energy efficiency measures and encourage employees to adopt sustainable behaviors.


In conclusion, measuring and reporting on scope 3 emissions is crucial for companies to understand their complete carbon footprint and identify opportunities for improvement throughout their entire value chain. By using advanced methodologies such as consumption-based accounting, life-cycle assessment, input-output analysis and carbon footprint calculators, companies can ensure accurate and comprehensive measurement of their scope 3 emissions. Companies can also take action to reduce their scope 3 emissions by implementing sustainable procurement practices, investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency, and encouraging sustainable behaviors among employees. This will allow companies to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability, and contribute to a low-carbon economy.



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