The Three-Step Process to Offsetting
The World Land Trust advocates that organisations seeking to offset their emissions follow three essential steps:
Your company needs a reliable analysis of its current emissions before you can take steps to reduce them and to offset any unavoidable emissions. WLT is not able to provide a detailed carbon footprinting assessment of the embedded emissions attributable to specific products or production processes. We do, however, offer a free carbon emissions audit to assess the carbon dioxide emissions associated with your organisation’s general operations.
WLT has made it simple for you to submit the data necessary to complete the assessment. As the information required includes data on energy use the most appropriate person to complete the emissions audit form will have access to utility bills as well as records of business travel. It is important to be as accurate as possible when filling out the form. The small investment of staff time involved should be more than worth the effort.
The audit form is submitted online and received by our Ecosystem Services team. We provide an audit evaluation service, calculating the amount of carbon dioxide (equivalent) emissions generated by the organisation and issuing an audit report.
If the standard online audit is not suitable for your needs we can offer a bespoke Carbon Balanced audit service. This is both more comprehensive than the online audit form and can be tailored to the particular requirements of your business.
By completing a carbon emissions audit, your organisation will be taking the first step towards evaluating your climate footprint. The WLT can recommend web sites on which you can find advice on how to reduce your emissions.
Without doubt, the most fundamental step an organisation should take to minimise its impact on the global climate is to reduce its emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.
Completing a free carbon emissions audit can reveal your organisation’s major sources of greenhouse gas emissions and highlight areas in which action to reduce emissions can be taken.
All sectors of the global economy will need to make deep cuts in emissions. Relying on another sector (such as land use) to offset emissions that are avoidable cannot succeed in addressing the climate change problem. As such, it is WLT’s belief is that carbon offsetting should only be used in conjunction with measures to reduce emissions at source, within a broader environmental strategy.
There are many simple steps which can significantly reduce the emissions associated with energy use of an organisation. Some links to organisations providing advice are given below.
- Carbon Reduction Programme – http://www.uea.ac.uk/lcic/cred offers advice to organisations wishing to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions
- Carbon Trust – www.carbontrust.co.uk work with business to identify carbon emissions and ways to reduce them (including funding).
- Energy Saving Trust – www.energysavingtrust.org.uk encourages energy efficiency and promotes the use of renewable energy sources.
Having calculated your firm’s emissions and considered actions to reduce them at source, you can work with the WLT to offset unavoidable emissions.
Offsetting your organisation’s unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions can be achieved through actions that prevent the imminent release of emissions elsewhere, or the removal of CO2 from the atmosphere, at a level equivalent to or greater than the amount of greenhouse gas emissions you cannot avoid.
When combined with an effective emissions reduction strategy, these offset measures can address a key climate-related environmental impact of your organisation.
Offsetting through habitat protection
WLT Carbon Balanced offsets are real, measurable, verifiable and have the protection of critically threatened habitats and their biodiversity as the major co-benefit.
WLT offsets are produced through habitat protection and restoration undertaken by our partners in tropical regions with outstanding habitats supporting rare and threatened species imperilled by on-going habitat loss and damage. Preserving these habitats prevents the release of carbon stored in their vegetation and soils.
Proceeding with an offset project
Having recieved a free carbon audit from the WLT and taken appropriate steps to reduce your greenhouse gas emissions, we invite organisations to offset their unavoidable emissions through the Carbon Balanced programme. Further detail about Carbon Balanced projects and their design can be found in our project sites and project design pages.
Regardless of whether you choose to offset or merely wish to understand your organisation’s carbon footprint, the first stage in the process is to submit a carbon audit.