What Are Scope 2 Emissions And How To Reduce Them?

GHG Emissions

The rise of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is a leading reason for today’s changing climate. The majority of companies understand their central role in reducing these harmful emissions and are aggressively developing strategies and plans to accomplish exactly that.

Climate-related planning starts with a detailed audit of the emissions a company is responsible for. To make this accounting easier and more thorough the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard has outlined three emissions categories — Scope 1, 2, and 3.

Source: U.S. EPA

In this article, we’ll focus on understanding Scope 2 emissions, as well as some reduction strategies available to companies. If you’re looking to explore more about Scope 1 emissions you can do so here and you can dive deeper into Scope 3 emissions here.

What Is Covered Under “Scope 2”?

On the surface, Scope 2 emissions are the simplest to understand — they can largely be pulled from a company’s electricity bill. Scope 2 emissions include GHG emissions generated from purchased energy (like electricity, steam for industrial processes, district heating and cooling) generated offsite and used by a company in their facilities.

The more complicated task related to Scope 2 emissions is understanding the original fuel source behind this purchased energy. Every source (coal, natural gas, nuclear, wind, solar, etc.) generates a different level of emissions. Companies can use only tools like this one from the U.S. Department of Energy to understand energy sources at an average state-level, or work with their utility directly to get more accurate information.

Reducing Scope 2 Emissions

After getting a detailed understanding of the amount of energy purchased and the fuel source of that energy, companies can begin taking action. There are a number of potential ways to reduce the amount of energy you need to purchase, and in turn reduce Scope 2 emissions. These include:

  • Prioritizing energy efficiency projects (switching to LEDs, installing better insulation, etc.)
  • Working with utilities to switch to renewable energy
  • Purchasing verified low-emissions data to offset the emissions your electricity generates

If your company is looking to purchase verified low-emissions data, EarnDLT can help. Our platform for quantified emissions makes it easy to purchase these assets from responsible energy producers. These producers’ processes generate fewer GHG emissions than traditional energy production, creating an opportunity for companies to buy these emissions reductions and count them against their own Scope 2 emissions reductions efforts.

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Earn makes buying and selling verified low-emissions data easy and trustworthy. Contact us to setup a demo today.