10. Apr 2014

How is a company’s energy footprint related to the global climate?

Energy Efficiency

Starting point

First introduced in 2011, the ISO 50001 standards - energy management systems -requirements and instructions for their implementation - describe how companies can improve their energy footprint and reduce energy costs through the use of the latest state of technology. Additionally, these standards aim at reducing the amount of greenhouse gases and other negative environmental impacts. This aspect may not be evident at first glance. Consumers are increasingly calling for a declaration of the carbon footprint of products (i.e. life cycle assessments and product declarations). When more transparency in CO2 emissions is called for when it comes to the use of a product, the question seems to be simple enough. If, however, the production process is being scrutinized as well, the carbon footprint of the company itself needs to be considered correspondingly.

More and more companies are starting to take charge of this topic on their own account, striving for climate-neutral approaches.

So how is a company’s energy footprint related to the global climate?

 

Insights

  • In most cases, COemissions of companies result from the direct or indirect use of energy and the operation of a plant or from performing activities.
  • The ISO 50001 standards aim at increasing energy efficiency, reducing the emission of greenhouse gases and other negative impacts on the environment and reducing energy costs.
  • By means of the energy planning process (i.e. evaluation of the amount of energy used, evaluation of the users and influencing factors for energy use, analyzing and evaluating the energy-related starting point, etc.), ISO 50001 describes the state of technology and how a company can create a basis for determining its carbon footprint in the first place.
  • For an ISO 50001 certification it is not enough to simply update the energy data (the environmental performance according to ISO 14001 and the EU environmental management standard EMAS).

 

Conclusions and expectations

  • For determining their CO2 emissions, companies need to know their energy footprint.
  • For determining the energy footprint, the area of application (i.e. the audit parameters) needs to be assessed.
  • Companies are still having their work cut out to determine the area of application and consequently creating the possibility for assessing their energy footprint. (Defining an energy planning process based on ISO 50001 might actually be helpful in this respect.)
  • Global climate goals (a maximum global warming of 2 degree Celsius, the reduction of CO2 emissions by 80% compared to 1990, and a stabilization of CO2concentrations at 450 ppm) may be broken down on the company level.

 

How can Quality Austria be of assistance?

Beside the certification of the implemented energy management system according to ISO 50001standards:

Author

Network partner

Mr. Wolfgang Hackenauer, MSc

Network partner, Product Expert Environment and Energy

Contact Persons Environment and Energy

Team

Mr. Axel Dick, MSc

Executive Vice President Business Development Environment and Energy, CSR

Network partner

Mr. Wolfgang Hackenauer, MSc

Network partner, Product Expert Environment and Energy

Network partner

Mr. Peter Sattler, MAS

Network partner, Product Expert FSC CoC, PEFC CoC and ISO 38200

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