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Innovation in companies no longer extends only to their own product range. Due to the increasing social responsibility of companies, they have to consider more and more aspects if they want to be innovative. One of these aspects are their own CO2 emissions. But how can they be calculated at all? And how influenced?

Capitalize the E in ESG

ESG (Environmental Social Governance) is the further development of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – it not only takes social aspects into account, but also ecological factors of the social responsibility of companies. For a successful start into ESG implementation, Monalisa Gomes Mühlböck, ESG consultant at Edmond and former CEO of Fronius in Brazil, makes concrete suggestions that are easy to implement: First, a Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) should be appointed. A CSO determines and oversees environmental impact reduction activities and sets sustainability standards that apply to every phase of business activity. By transferring responsibility to a person at management level, the sustainability goals can be efficiently achieved and checked.

Corporate Carbon Footprint 

Another step in ESG, according to Monalisa Gomez Mühlböck, is calculating your own corporate carbon footprint. Only when one has a good overview of where CO2 emissions are caused in their own company, they can derive sensible measures to reduce CO2. After these measures have been implemented, the corporate carbon footprint is calculated again in order to be able to evaluate the effect of the measures and make further informed decisions. However, there are always CO2 emissions that cannot be further reduced at the moment – so-called unavoidable emissions. Here there is the possibility of CO2 compensation in order to become climate neutral. The unavoidable emissions are offset by purchasing carbon credits. One carbon credit corresponds to one tonne of carbon dioxide emitted. Companies buy the equivalent of their unavoidable CO2 emissions from international projects that invest e.g. in social measures, local communities and the environment and thus enable the implementation of such projects mostly in developing countries. Although this is only an accounting measure, voluntary carbon offsetting has created a new CO2 market that enables environmentally conscious companies and start-ups to make their contribution to environmental protection and at the same time to support social and sustainable developments.

ESG measures by companies influence the entire world trade accordingly. Start-ups, cleantech, CO2 compensation and above all the corporate carbon footprint are topics that we will hear a lot about in the future – reason enough for us to dedicate a separate article to the corporate carbon footprint!

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