The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and World Resources Institute (WRI) today released a new edition of the international standard used worldwide by businesses to report and set targets for their greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs).
The Greenhouse Gas Protocol: A Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard, Revised Edition ( 3.9 MB) was unveiled during the May 5-7 conference on GHG Registries, Climate Policy and the Bottom Line held in San Diego.
This standard, first launched in 2001, has become the most widely used global standard for corporate accounting of greenhouse gas emissions. It was developed by over 500 experts from businesses, NGOs, and governments. It has been adopted by over 150 companies, including industry associations representing pulp and paper, aluminum, and cement, and enjoys the support of NGOs and governments alike.
Numerous climate initiatives, including reduction programs, trading schemes, environmental standards, and registries have based their measurement and reporting guidelines on the GHG Protocol. This includes the US EPA Climate Leaders Initiative, Global Reporting Initiative, the WWF Climate Savers Program, California Climate Action Registry, World Economic Forum Global GHG Register, the UK Trading Scheme, the Chicago Climate Exchange, and the monitoring protocols of the EU Trading Scheme.
The widespread adoption of the protocol contributes significantly to the standardization and harmonization of GHG accounting and reporting frameworks worldwide, says Björn Stigson, president of WBCSD.
The Greenhouse Gas Protocol: A Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard, Revised Edition reinforces and solidifies the standards of its widely used predecessor, but adds more case studies, annexes and guidance, including a new chapter on how to set credible GHG reduction targets. These additions draw upon the experiences of numerous businesses and climate programs that used the first edition.
Consistent and transparent reporting is particularly important at a time when both the public and shareholders are demanding that companies recognize the impact of their emissions on the climate and take action to reduce them, said WRI president Jonathan Lash.
The GHG Protocol reduces transaction costs for business, improves consistency, and ultimately facilitates efforts to link different trading schemes into a global market. It is also contributing to other accounting efforts, such as the forthcoming ISO standard on GHG accounting, which has signaled its intent to be compatible with GHG Protocol. The objective is also to rally more companies globally to use the Protocol and thus facilitate corporate action on climate change.
The World Resources Institute is an environmental think tank that goes beyond research to create practical ways to protect the Earth and improve peoples lives. Inside the WRI, the GHG Protocol Initiative is managed by the Sustainable Enterprise Program.
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development is a coalition of 175 international companies united by a shared commitment to sustainable development. The council also benefits from a Regional Network of 48 business councils and partner organizations, representing more than 1,000 business leaders worldwide.