Credera’s global carbon emissions and how we celebrated Earth Day 2021
Earth Day, which took place last week on 22nd April, is a global event that demonstrates support for environmental protection every year. We worked across our company borders to deliver a week of engaging and varied activities to raise awareness and affect change internally. We’re also pleased to be able to share Credera’s first baseline global carbon-emission calculation and explain how we got to this figure.
Here’s what we got up to in our inaugural Green Week:
On Monday, we welcomed an external speaker from global sustainability consultancy ‘Anthesis Group’ for an after-hours presentation and Q+A session. This covered calculating net zero emissions and advice on how companies and individuals can achieve their net zero goals.
On Thursday, Christian Buechel spoke to us about the concept of carbon fee and dividends, drawing on his experience with the Citizens’ Climate Lobby, a grassroots advocacy organisation working for the passage of Carbon Fee and Dividend policy.
The environmental team voted on a green charity to support during the week, landing on the Marine Conservation Society UK, with a target of raising £500. Credera then matched this donation up to £500, putting the total raised to a cool £1110.
We ran an internal competition based on a list of green activities we wanted to encourage our employees to do. The person who gained the most points won a £50 National Trust voucher, and actions on this list included items such as ‘Go vegetarian for the day – 3 points’, ‘Conduct a carbon footprint online calculation – 15 points’, ‘Avoid single use plastic for a day – 3 points’.
Chris Dean, CEO, said “I’m really pleased that so many Crederians engaged with our tapestry of activities, especially around the competition that enforced small but effective changes people can make in their day-to-day lives to reduce their overall carbon footprint.”
Advice, walks, and cycles
The environmental group also posted daily on our internal communications platform around a green subject of their choice. For example, one day saw a curated list of podcasts, books, and films for people to watch, whilst another raised awareness on tech for good (such as the search engine Ecosia, which uses the ad revenue from searches to plant trees all across the world).
We also ran two lunchtime activities to get our people engaging with the great outdoors by hosting a company-wide walk and a cycling session.
We have also been working for the last year to establish our first carbon emissions baseline as a global company. We are excited to share our high-level methodology, the results of this effort, and our next steps.
By calculating our carbon footprint, we’ve set a benchmark to improve upon and by figuring out where our emissions are coming from, we’re able to focus on where we need to reduce emissions.
We leveraged the GHG Protocol to quantify our emissions as a company. GHG Protocol is a comprehensive global standardised framework that measures and manages greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from private operations. To ensure we were not undercounting our emissions by using a skewed sample of fiscal year 2020, we used fiscal year 2019 data extrapolated to our headcount as of March 2021 across all our offices. This would present us with the most realistic picture of “business as usual” emissions for Credera under normal circumstances.
These include operations in our Credera U.S. offices (Dallas, Houston, Denver, Chicago, NYC, and Los Angeles), Credera UK offices (London, Leeds, and Manchester), and our build centre operations located in Costa Rica, Mauritius, and India.
Each section of the GHG Protocol has various emissions factors, calculations, and unique assumptions to arrive at the most accurate estimation of emissions. These will be thoroughly explained and documented in a subsequent article laying out our detailed methodology.
Our calculated emissions
According to our estimations, Credera emits 5,584 metric tons of CO2e yearly. The breakdown is outlined below:
Calculating our total emissions is only one step in our pursuit of continuous improvement in environmental sustainability. Some of the actions we plan to take with this information are:
Plan for accreditation: We recognise that self-calculation may contain inaccuracies and that accreditation by a certified organisation is necessary to have the most accurate picture of our emissions. We plan to work toward partnering with such an organisation in the near future.
Improve our collection of data: Throughout the arduous process of collecting, standardising, and calculating our emissions across each of the GHG Protocol’s categories, we have identified many places in which we can better track key metrics. Potential examples include setting up monthly reports with our building management to determine an estimated electricity usage, tracking expenses with more precision, and standing up data systems to collect monthly data.
Act on our largest emissions categories: With this new data, we have a better idea of where we should focus our emission reduction efforts to make the biggest impact. Alongside this, we will have a better idea of what actions we need to take to create science-based targets for the future
Explore carbon offset opportunities: We plan to evaluate carbon offset programs that would align with Credera’s values and have a positive impact on communities.
In particular this year, we are looking to reduce our footprint from office emissions and transport, increase the number of rewilding days, and raise greater awareness and money for green charities.
As we continue to mature in our commitment to environmental sustainability, we also plan to continually publish this information so that we can highlight improvements and document steps. We hope it may spur others to do the same.