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Reducing the carbon footprint in organizations and companies will have long-lasting environmental and economic benefits not only to individual organizations, but to the nation at large, one of country’s pioneering carbon-reduction consultancy firms – Somaratna Consultants announced on Tuesday May 26(Tuesday), 2015. “The announcement by the Ministry of Power and Energy to reduce the carbon footprint of the energy sector by 5 percent by 2025 is an unprecedented move by a State agency in Sri Lanka,” Somaratna Consultants Managing Director K. Chandralal Somaratna said.
‘Sri Lanka Energy Sector Development Plan for a knowledge-based Economy 2015 – 2025’ policy made public last month, stipulates that Sri Lanka will make plans to reduce the carbon footprint of the energy sector to address global warming and climate change impacts.

The policy also added that all available opportunities in product development and service delivery will be exploited to develop home-grown technologies in energy conversion, storage, and delivery, metering and billing to enhance the stake of renewable energy, carbon emissions avoidance and efficiency in the energy systems.

Furthermore, the Ministry announcing that a comprehensive research would be undertaken in atmospheric carbon reduction technologies to mitigate the impact of increased energy consumption on the climate was a highly positive move.

In light of these developments, the ability to conclusively report GHG footprint is becoming increasingly important.   Recently, Somaratna Consultants marked a new chapter in the country’s corporate sector by providing consultancy services for the first-ever GHG Report to be verified against ISO 14064-1 by an accredited certification body.  So far they have carried out three similar assignments successfully.
‘When you have reduced your carbon footprint from 5.27 kgs of CO2e per kg of your product to 3.67 kgs of CO2e per kg of your product you should be able to communicate that to your clients conclusively.  With the GHG targets being imposed by various countries this is going to be the new competitive advantage,” he said.

The ISO 14000 family of standards provides practical tools for companies and organizations of all kinds looking to manage their environmental responsibilities. Out of this, ISO 14064-1:2006 specifies principles and requirements at the organization level for quantification, reporting and removal of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, which includes requirements for the design, development, management, reporting and verification of an organization’s GHG inventory.

Green house gases stand out as the biggest threat to our climate, posing many challenges to both the present and future wellbeing of mankind. The measuring of GHG emission levels and controlling it remains the need of the hour especially to industries that contribute to this worldwide issue.

The process  included measurement and controlling greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, ozone-depleting substances, energy usage, air quality, air pollutants, waste, water usage, waste water, chemicals and through re-forestation initiatives.

“Industries are an integral part of the global effort to tackle climate change, but they have always lacked a consistent and transparent approach to measure and report emissions – until now. The ISO-14064 implements a robust and clear framework to establish credible emissions accounting and reporting practices, thereby helping organizations develop an emissions baseline, set mitigation goals, create more targeted climate action plans and track progress over time. We believe that all corporate entities in Sri Lanka should strongly commit themselves towards creating an energy-efficient, low-carbon economy,” Somaratna added.

“In an unprecedented move, United States President Barack Obama pledged to reduce the world’s second largest carbon emitting economy’s greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Not only should Sri Lankan companies up their game, but should tap into tremendous opportunities created by this. Companies should seriously look at into investing in innovative low-carbon technologies that will not only make an important contribution to our greenhouse gas reduction but also boost  their bottom-lines,” opined Arjuna Somaratna, Director – Risk Management Services.