I was reading an article in the Guardian recently about “embodied carbon” and it got me reflecting again on just how complex calculating carbon emissions is.

We’ve been calculating our carbon footprint at Capgemini UK for coming up to four years now.  Using the GHG protocol we measure scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions including all our energy use and business travel as well as smaller magnitude items like waste and fugitive air-conditioner emissions.

Even without stretching into the supply chain, as discussed in the Guardian article, we have to compile and process around three and a half million discrete points of data each year.

In the end the spreadsheet we had been using just couldn’t take it anymore and so we approached our Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) team based in India to run the whole process for us. The end result is robust and timely carbon information produced for us on a monthly basis enabling us to more effectively manage our carbon performance initiatives.

It’s also led to a whole new carbon accounting service that BPO have taken to market.  For more information, click here.

13th May 2011