ISO 14064-1 Carbon Footprint Verification
Global Warming is the increase in temperature on earth’s surface as a result of the greenhouse effect created by the accumulation of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere. The infrared rays emitted by the Sun reach our world after a journey of millions of kilometers. Some of these rays hit the earth and heat the land and seas, while some of them are reflected back to space after hitting the earth. However, greenhouse gases in the air absorb some of the infrared radiation, preventing them from escaping from the atmosphere. This absorption causes the atmosphere to warm up. The more greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the more the heat retains. As a result, the average temperature of the Earth rises.
Over the last 100 years, the global climate has warmed by an average of 0.5°C, in part due to greenhouse gas emissions from human activities. The research of the British scientist Stern has revealed that even if no emissions are released from today, the global temperature will continue to increase by 0.5 °C to 1 °C in the future decades. The climate models made in the study predict that the world will warm by 1.4 °C to 5.8 °C in the next century unless measures are taken to significantly reduce these emissions. These changes will significantly destabilize the earth’s hydrological cycle, cause greater variability in precipitation and water flows, and increase the intensity of extreme hydrological events.
The hottest 5 years ever in the world (starting with the warmest) are 2005, 1998, 2002, 2003 and 2006. As can be seen, the hottest 5 years ever occurred in the last 15 years.
What is Carbon Footprint?
It is the extent of the damage done to the environment by greenhouse gases released as a result of human activities, which are shown as the main responsible for global warming and measured in terms of carbon dioxide (CO2).
Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases have always been found in our atmosphere and have made the world livable by keeping the heat inside, just like the greenhouse. With industrialization, the amount of these gases in the atmosphere has increased, and the global average temperature has increased with the retention of more heat. The result of this is climate change. With the activities we carry out every day, we cause the emission of these greenhouse gases and affect the world.
This effect is our Carbon Footprint.
Sometimes this carbon emission is seen very clearly. For example, as in the gases coming out of the exhaust pipes of our vehicles on the way to work. Sometimes the situation is not so obvious. For example, the emissions in the process from the production of the products we buy from the market to the transportation.
Contrary to popular belief, reducing our Carbon Footprint is not that difficult. Aside from the sacrifices that will require compromising our standard of living, it will likely have consequences that will seriously improve our quality of life.
Although it is not possible to determine our Carbon Footprint exactly, the general idea we will gain on this subject will help us reduce our personal negative impact on the climate.
Carbon Dioxide, Methane, Nitroxide, Hydrofluorocarbons, Perfluorocarbons, Sulfur Hexafluoride, Ozone, Water Vapor, Chlorofluorocarbons…
All these gases are the gases that cause global warming due to their high heat holding capacity. That is, they are greenhouse gases. However, the Kyoto protocol demands that only the first 6 of these gases be controlled and reduced. For the Carbon Footprint, these six greenhouse gases are calculated.
Of these six greenhouse gases, the gas with the highest heat retention capacity is Sulfur Hexafluoride. It can hold 23,900 times more heat than the same amount of Carbon Dioxide gas. Likewise, Perfluorocarbons can hold up to 9,200 times more heat than Carbon Dioxide. However, one should not be mistaken by looking at these two examples. The most dangerous greenhouse gas is Carbon Dioxide, which has a 50% share in global warming. This is because both the amount and the lifetime of carbon dioxide molecules in the atmosphere are very long, such as 50-100 years.
What will happen in the future if we do nothing?
- First of all, the glaciers will melt.
- Major droughts will occur as a result of reduced snowfall.
- As a result of the increase in sea and ocean levels, countries, islands and cities with coastlines will be submerged.
- Forest fires will increase
- There will be an increase in disasters such as drought, erosion and desertification.
- There will be a decrease in living areas and species.
- There will be deaths due to heat waves.
- North Africa will become desert and there will be great migrations.
- Humanity will face thirst as a result of the decrease in fresh water resources.
- There will be a decrease in living areas and species such as the extinction of almost all (97%) coral reefs and the extinction of polar bears.
- The Arctic Ocean will disappear completely.
- Infectious diseases will increase, especially in Africa and North America, malaria will spread.
The possibility of changing the climate depending on the change in carbon dioxide accumulation in the atmosphere was first predicted in 1896 by the Swedish Nobel Prize winner Svante Arrhenius.
What can I do ?
We all have to go to work and we all love consumption. But we can help in many ways.
First, we must recognize our personal contribution to global warming. Starting today, the Carbon Footprint will show you how you can minimize this contribution and make the right product choices in the future.
Do you know these? Electricity is the biggest contributor to carbon emissions. That’s why when you make coffee with an electric heater or turn on the TV, you contribute to global warming.
Below is a list of things you can start doing right away; By doing these, you can reduce your contribution to global warming. The measures in this list will not cost you; On the contrary, it will save you money.
- Subscribe to a green energy power company that generates electricity from renewable sources (such as wind and hydropower); so you can reduce your carbon footprint contribution from electricity to zero.
- Turn off your unused devices completely (lights, television, DVD player, Wi-Fi, computer, etc.).
- Turn the heater down a bit (try a few degrees lower).
- Reduce the temperature of the hot water slightly (even a two-degree drop will make a big difference).
- Check the heater’s timer setting; There is no point in heating the house when you go to work.
- Run your dishwasher and washing machine with full load; In this way, you save water, electricity and detergent.
- Fill the teapot with as much water as you will use.
- As soon as your mobile phone is charged, take it off the charger.
- Defrost your refrigerator/freezer at regular intervals.
- Do the weekly shopping in one go.
- Hang dry your laundry instead of drying it in the machine.
- Instead of driving to the gym, choose to run.
The following measures may require you to invest some money, but they will pay for themselves in 1-4 years with savings on bills.
- Use energy-saving light bulbs.
- Install thermostatic valves on your second radiators.
- Insulate your hot water tank, roof and walls.
- 35 percent of the home’s heat is lost through the walls. Installing wall insulation in a medium-sized home will add up to £100 a year on fuel bills.
- You can stop 25 percent of the heat lost from the roof by insulating the ceiling with a thickness of 180 mm.
- Recycle domestic wastewater.
- Replace your old refrigerator/freezer (if over 15 years old) with a new “A” energy rated refrigerator/freezer.
- Replace your old boiler with a new energy efficient condensing boiler.
Travel less and do not increase your carbon footprint.
- Share your car on the way to work or taking the kids to school.
- Take a bus or train instead of a car.
- Do not board a domestic plane (eg London to Edinburgh); use train or bus instead.
- To France, take a ferry or tunnel instead of taking a plane (for England).
- Find out if your employer will allow you to work from home one day a week.
- When you buy a new car, choose the ones with diesel engines. If you have a diesel car, you can produce your own biodiesel.
- Rent a bike instead of a car while on vacation.
- When you stay at the hotel, turn off the lights and air conditioning when leaving the room.
- Ask for your towels to be washed every other day, not every day.
Besides the primary carbon footprint, there is also a secondary footprint and it depends on your shopping habits. When you buy out-of-season food at the supermarket, it has been brought by plane or ship from distant countries; This also contributes to your carbon footprint.
- Reduce meat consumption.
- Do not buy bottled water if tap water is safe to drink (especially if it was brought from far away).
- Choose locally grown fruits and vegetables and, if possible, grow your own fruits and vegetables.
- Do not buy fresh fruit and vegetables out of season; They may have been brought from distant places.
- Choose products made near your home area (avoid products made in remote locations).
- Buy organic products.
- Do not buy over-packaged products.
- Recycle whenever possible.
- Be mindful of the activities you do in your spare time.
Which of the following activities will cause an increase in carbon emissions? Sauna, health club, restaurants and bars, go-kart, etc.
In addition to these, there is the carbon footprint of your workplace.
Do you leave your computer and monitor on when you leave your desk? Do you leave the lights on when you leave the office? Are you unnecessarily printing out? Is it possible to print on both sides of the page?
Each planted tree absorbs 12 kg of carbon dioxide per year. During their lifetime, they are one of the greatest protectors of nature by eliminating 1 ton of carbon dioxide.
CARBON FOOTPRINT CALCULATION
Carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions resulting from transportation, heating, electricity consumption, etc. activities of institutions or individuals, measured in unit carbon dioxide. Various methodologies and standards have been developed internationally in carbon footprint calculation. In addition to the methodologies published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), GHG Protocol, ISO 14064, CDP, PAS 2050 are the leading standards that deal with the 6 main greenhouse gases (CO2, CH4, N2O, PFc, HFc, SF6) evaluated within the scope of the Kyoto Protocol.
In order to calculate the carbon footprint, a company must follow a process consisting of 4 steps. These are briefly:
Step 1 Determining the goal: It is the determination of the goal(s) to be achieved with the carbon footprint calculation. For example, Carbon footprint results can be used to set CO2 reduction targets and to define (possible) CO2 reduction measures.
Step 2 Determining the limits: After the purpose is determined, the firm must make various choices to set the limits for its carbon footprint (provided that it remains within the limits specified in the standards to be applied). The scope most used for corporate reporting is the scope of operational control. This means that the organization will calculate and take responsibility for the carbon footprint resulting from all activities that are under their daily operational control. Some emissions other than the company’s own activities will be considered in this context.
Step 3 Data collection and application of emission factors: After agreeing on the limits and scope of the footprint, data on activities can be collected and emission factors and global warming potentials can be calculated. This collection of information is called inventory. Emission factors may differ in each country and may change over time. Many resources are available for emission factors, such as IPCC guideline and WBCSD’s GHG Protocol 2007.
Step 4 Evaluating the results and reporting the footprint: The report should be transparent and the choices made and assumptions should be clearly stated. Comparisons should be made with the selected baseline year, sample year 2012, in the information in the report, and possible uncertainties (accuracy) in the data and calculations should be specified.
It is the measure of the damage done to the environment by greenhouse gases released as a result of human activities, which are shown as the main responsible for global warming and measured in terms of carbon dioxide (CO2). Its unit is “kg.CO2-equivalent” or “ton.CO2-equivalent”.
Carbon footprint is calculated by institutions for legal obligations, corporate social responsibility, customer or investor demands, marketing and corporate image, mandatory or voluntary greenhouse gas emission reduction and participation in emission trading mechanisms.
We can examine the carbon footprint in 2 different categories;
1- Personal Carbon Footprint
2- Corporate Carbon Footprint
- Personal Carbon Footprint:
It is the concept that shows how much of the emissions we are personally responsible for during our annual life activities.
Personal Carbon Footprint consists of 2 main parts;
- Primary Carbon Footprint: It is the measure of the CO2 emissions created by the fossil fuels consumed due to the electricity and fuel consumed by people in their homes and the journeys they have made with vehicles (such as cars, planes).
- Secondary Carbon Footprint: It is the measure of indirect CO2 emissions from the entire life cycle of the products people use, from their manufacture to their final degradation.
- Corporate Carbon Footprint:
It is the concept that shows the emissions related to the annual activities of the institutions. Corporate Carbon Footprint consists of 3 main parts;
- Direct Carbon Footprint (Scope-1): Fossil fuels used by institutions for their activities (for heating or production process) and emissions created by fossil fuels used by vehicles owned by the institution are evaluated under Scope-1.
- Indirect Carbon Footprint (Scope- 2): Emissions caused by electrical energy consumed by institutions, emissions due to steam, cooling or hot water purchased by the institution from another institution are evaluated under Scope-2.
- Other Indirect Carbon Footprint (Scope-3): All emissions related to the products used by corporations (for example, from raw materials to advertising brochures), the subcontracting activities they purchase, the fuel used by the corporation’s rental vehicles, and the land, sea and air transportation of the corporation’s employees for business purposes are under Scope-3. is being evaluated.
CARBON FOOTPRINT REDUCTION METHODS
- Energy Efficiency: Today, there is a saving potential of up to 33% in commercial buildings and up to 40% in industrial facilities through energy efficiency studies. The more energy consumed can be reduced, the more emission reduction is achieved. In this way, institutions will not only reduce their emissions, but also reduce their costs.
- Recycling: Emission reduction is achieved if wastes such as glass, paper and aluminum are accumulated and recovered through recycling. Because the energy required to produce a raw material from scratch is less than required for recycling. For example, by recycling 1 ton of paper, 36 tons of CO2 emissions are not released into the atmosphere.
- Planting Trees: The first way that comes to mind to reduce emissions is to plant trees. Trees absorb CO2 from the air into their leaves through photosynthesis, creating the nutrition they need for their lives. Individuals and institutions can also reduce emissions through land reforestation studies. In fact, the amount of emission sequestration differs according to the type and age of each tree. However, a special study is required to determine this difference. Today, we consider the figure of 11 kg.CO2 for annual emission reduction per tree.
- Use of Renewable Energy: Approximately 0.6 kg.CO2 is released into the atmosphere per kWh of the electricity we consume.
- Preferring Products and Services with Low Carbon Emission: Preferring recyclable products, especially paper and plastic, and choosing the A and above energy class of the products we use are ways to reduce emissions. This mitigation path is also a factor that creates investor pressure for both producers and service providers. The reason for this is that institutions that aim to reduce their carbon footprint prefer the products of institutions that provide products and services with zero emissions in their product and service purchases.
- Changing Transportation Preferences: By choosing public transportation instead of our personal vehicles, we can reduce our transportation-related carbon footprint by up to 90%. Not choosing to travel by plane, especially at distances we can travel by bus, is also an emission reduction method. The reason for this is that the number of emissions per unit distance in air travel is higher than other transportation methods.
- Changing Fuel Preference: Preferring low-emission fuels in order to reduce the emissions created by fossil fuels used in vehicles or using hybrid fuel, electric vehicles is a preferred way to reduce vehicle-related emissions.
- Obtaining Carbon Reduction Credits: Carbon credits are the certificates provided by accredited institutions for each ton of CO2 created by carbon reduction projects or below the current carbon emission quota. Individuals, institutions or organizations that want to reduce their carbon footprint or become carbon neutral can reduce their emissions by purchasing these credits.
Why Calculate the Carbon Footprint?
- Legal obligation,
- Corporate social responsibility,
- Customer or investor demands,
- Marketing and corporate image
- Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction (mandatory/voluntary)
- Participation in emissions trading mechanisms
Carbon Footprint Verification
Due to the increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, changes in living conditions due to climate changes will be seen. With the increase in industrialization, there have been some developments with the release of different gases into the nature. Certain standards emerge after a global initiative in this regard.
Studies based on the reduction of greenhouse gases come to the fore within governments and different organizations. By introducing the 14607 Product Carbon Footprint Standard, a situation can be put forward as to how the reduction processes will be carried out.
How to Get a Carbon Footprint Verification Certificate?
Actions regarding the carbon footprint verification document known as ISO 14607 can be taken after being evaluated by international supervisory companies. By examining the amounts of these emissions within a one-year or 6-month period; A situation such as providing the necessary documents or certificates may also be revealed. After the verified calculations, these documents can be submitted according to the amount of greenhouse gas.
ISO 14064-1 Standard and Carbon Footprint
The world, including human beings, is in an order and balance with its living and non-living beings. However, it is now generally accepted that the way of life of human beings in pursuit of their needs in the fast-moving time causes a deterioration in the climate system. Climate change is expressed as one of the biggest problems on a global scale that we face in the world today.
Concrete data obtained scientifically reveal that man-made greenhouse gases cause global climate change. Worse, we will continue to see the effects of climate change caused by human-induced greenhouse gases that can remain in the atmosphere for hundreds of years. As of today, climate change affects every aspect of our lives, including physical and natural environment, urban life, development and economy, technology, human rights, agriculture and food, clean water and health, and makes it obligatory for governments to increase their efforts to solve these issues.
In parallel with the rapid growth that started after the industrial revolution in carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas accumulations in the atmosphere, a significant upward trend in global average surface temperatures is observed.
The diversity of the types and sources of greenhouse gases that cause global warming and climate change also leads to a wide range of solutions. When countries determine their national climate change policies, they consider all these possibilities. They determine the existing technology infrastructure, human resources, short-medium-long-term development priorities, taking into account their unique conditions.
While the effects of climate change are seen in our world, our country takes its share from these effects. For this reason, the processes of strengthening, developing and implementing strategies in order to adapt and benefit from the effects of climate events and to manage the effects, while taking measures to control and reduce the negative effects of anthropogenic greenhouse gases, are also extremely important.
In fact, adapting to climate change is possible with a good understanding of the effects of climate change, so that the best methods of combating these effects can be created. Adapting to climate change is an ongoing process, not just one step at a time.
The ISO 14064-1 Standard covers the principles and requirements for calculating and reporting greenhouse gas emissions and removals at the enterprise level. This standard also specifies the requirements for the design, development, management, reporting and verification of an organization’s greenhouse gas inventory.
The ISO 14064 series of standards is a neutral greenhouse gas program. When a greenhouse gas program is implemented, the requirements of this greenhouse gas program are a continuation of the requirements in the ISO 14064 series standards.
If a requirement of the ISO 14064 series of standards prohibits an organization or a GHG project partner from meeting a requirement of the GHG program, the GHG program requirement is given priority.
What are the Important Concepts?
Greenhouse gas: Both the natural and anthropogenic gas component of the atmosphere, which is absorbed and released by the earth, atmosphere and clouds at specific wavelengths in the infrared radiation spectrum. Greenhouse gases (CO2, CH4, N2O, HFCS, PFCS, SF6) taken into account in the calculations within the scope of ISO 14064 standard;
Greenhouse gas source: A physical unit or process that releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gas sink: A physical unit or process that removes any of the greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gas reservoir: The physical unit or component for the storage or accumulation capacity of the biosphere, geosphere, or hydrosphere to remove a GHG removed from the atmosphere by a GHG sink, or a GHG captured from a GHG source.
Greenhouse gas emission: The total mass of one of the greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere over a given period of time.
Greenhouse gas removal: The total mass of one of the greenhouse gases removed from the atmosphere in a given period of time.
Greenhouse gas emission and removal factor: Factor related to emissions of greenhouse gases or activity data for removals.
Direct Greenhouse Gas Emission (Scope 1): GHG emission from GHG sources owned or controlled by our organization (financial and operational).
Energy Related Greenhouse Gas Emission (Scope 2): Greenhouse gas emission generated during the production of electricity, heat or steam consumed by our organization from outside.
Other Indirect Greenhouse Gas Emissions (Scope 3): GHG emissions other than energy related GHG emissions that arise from GHG sources owned or controlled by other organizations as a result of an organization’s activities.
Greenhouse Gas Activity Data: Quantitative measure of activity resulting in the emission or removal of a greenhouse gas.
Global Warming Potential (GWP): Factor to define the radiative force effect of a given greenhouse gas based on mass in terms of equivalent carbon dioxide over a given time period.
Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (CO2e): The unit used to compare the radiant power of a greenhouse gas with carbon dioxide.
Target User: Person or organization identified by those reporting GHG-related information and relying on this information to make decisions.
Directed Activity: A specific activity or initiative that is not organized as a greenhouse gas project, implemented by an organization to reduce or prevent direct or indirect greenhouse gas emissions or to increase greenhouse gas removals.
Trust level: The degree of trust requested by the target user in validation or verification.
Base Year: A historical period determined for future benchmarking of GHG emissions or removals or other GHG related information.
Determination of Establishment Boundaries
An organization may consist of one or more facilities. Plant-level GHG emissions and removals can be generated from one or more GHG sources or sinks.
The organization should combine plant-level greenhouse gas emissions and removals with one of the following approaches:
- a) Control: The organization is responsible for all calculated greenhouse gas emissions and/or removals of facilities under its financial and administrative control.
- b) Equal sharing: The organization is responsible for all parts of the greenhouse gas emissions and/or removals of the relevant facilities.
Determination of Activity Limits
The organization should define and document its own limits of activity. Setting operational limits should include identifying greenhouse gas emissions and removals associated with the organization’s work, classifying greenhouse gas emissions and removals as direct emissions (scope 1 mandatory), energy related emissions (scope 2 mandatory) and other indirect emissions (scope 3 not mandatory). This also includes choosing which of the other indirect emissions to calculate and report.
The organization should identify and document the greenhouse gas sources (Mobile & Stationary Combustion, Fugitive Emissions, Process Emissions, …) that directly contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. The organization must separately document the suppliers of the electricity, heat or steam it consumes by importing. When calculating other indirect GHG emissions, the organization should separately identify and document GHG sources that contribute to other indirect GHG emissions.
The organization must determine the calculation methodology suitable for it, decide on the base year, collect activity data, decide on Emission Factors (EF), Net Calorific Values (NCV), Global Warming Potentials (GWP) and other components (Oxidation Factor, Intensity, Cycles…) that will affect the calculation.
The organization should prepare a GHG report to facilitate the verification of GHG inventory and participation in the GHG program or to inform external or internal users. GHG reports must be complete, consistent, accurate, relevant and transparent. The organization should determine the content, structure, public availability, and dissemination of GHG reports based on the requirements of the applicable GHG program, internal reporting needs, and the needs of the target users of the report.
If the organization has prepared a public GHG statement that purports to comply with this standard, it should make the GHG report prepared in accordance with this standard or the independent third-party verification disclosure for the GHG statement publicly available. If the organization’s greenhouse gas statement has been independently verified, the verification statement should be provided to the intended users.
The overall purpose of verification is an impartial and objective review of the reported greenhouse gas emissions and removals or the greenhouse gas statement. QSI verifies the Greenhouse Gas Emission Reports prepared according to ISO 14064-1 according to ISO 14065 accreditation standard with its expert staff.