At this time of year, we are busy preparing for our annual submission to the Carbon Disclosure Project or CDP as it’s more commonly known as. CDP is an international non-profit organisation that encourages companies and businesses to measure their carbon footprint and report this in the form of an annual submission. The emphasis is on lowering carbon emissions within the business, up and down the supply chain and making environmental reporting the norm.
Understanding a business’s carbon footprint starts off as a straightforward task but quickly gets more complicated. Simple in terms of measuring the emissions from direct usage of electricity, waste, fuel etc; typically known as scope 1 and 2 emissions. A lot more complex when trying to measure scope 3 emissions, which focuses on the carbon emitted from growing, transporting and roasting coffee as well as the emissions arising from the disposal of waste coffee at the café or office etc.
Our environmental strategy is about trying to lower our environmental impact over the long term which involves changing how we do things and making investments that lower our carbon footprint. While it is good to look at the absolute amount of carbon emitted it is probably more insightful to look at the carbon intensity of our business. Carbon intensity is the amount of carbon emitted per unit of business activity, so this measure gives a better understanding as to whether goals are being met or not. What is really encouraging is that our carbon intensity from our operations over the past 4 years has dropped by 8% and this does not include the environmental benefit of our Woodland Coffee tree planting activities.
While submitting to the CDP is a lot of work, it does focus the mind on how to achieve goals and makes implementing our environmental plan less woolie, which is always good!