The 8 Steps to Net Zero
The Step-By-Step Guide to Decarbonising a Global Organisation
Net zero needs to be the ambitious destination for private business and national governments, according to UNEP’s Emissions Gap Report, which states that current sustainability pledges will deliver a damaging 2.2°C rise by the end of the 21st century. In support of this objective, EECO2’s 8 step approach to decarbonisation will allow global organisations to fully visualise the road to net zero and the journey that must be taken to successfully meet their sustainability goals. With the SBTi’s recently released net zero standard defining the qualities of an achievable decarbonisation plan, in alignment with the Paris Agreement, the path to net zero has never been clearer.
Step 1 – Before beginning on the road to net zero, start by asking the right questions to guarantee success further along the journey:
- What is your emissions goal (scope)?
- When are you going to achieve this?
- How will you implement this?
- What competencies will deliver results?
- How will progress be observed and understood?
Step 2 – To truly understand the impact of an organisation’s operations, the entire value chain including all 3 scopes must be considered:
- There must be a recognition of all inbound and outbound emissions, ranging from site-based in scopes 1 and 2 to supply chain and external assets within scope 3.
- Approaches that prioritise increasing efficiency of ongoing processes and grant access to renewable technology will facilitate net zero delivery.
- Success in this area will be determined by the quality and capability of technical support, carbon management, reporting, assurance and planning.
Step 3 – Preparation for every eventuality will require a recognition of future challenges and opportunities:
- The viability of new and innovative technology may change over time as regulation adapts to reflect these advancements.
- As customer consumption changes, the energy and distribution demands that sites face will change.
- Access to renewable technology could shift as governmental initiatives seek to encourage renewable investment.
Step 4 – An emphasis should be placed on identifying best practice:
- To achieve this, current internal standards in energy management, efficiency and operation must be fully understood.
- External benchmarking of decarbonisation best practice will allow for greater insight into the latest methods of net zero delivery, whilst reliably maintaining compliance and quality.
Step 5 – In realising the challenge, pharmaceutical companies can understand how decarbonisation will power their business:
- The financial impact of net zero needs to be understood across different scenarios, considering high, medium and low likelihood, in contrast to business as usual.
- Contrast needs to be made with future predictions and ongoing performance to clarify the difference in business as usual versus future potential outcome, with regards to OpEx.
Step 6 – By determining the solutions, destination net zero is getting closer:
- Consider the methods of decarbonising on a site-by-site basis, but also clarify the potential obstacles to their delivery.
- If sampling only select sites within an organisation, ensure they are representative of the wider network.
- At each stage of the journey, consider the relevant competencies and skills needed to ensure quality.
Step 7 – To guarantee success, delivery must be organised:
- Develop and utilise a specialised team aimed at providing the overall design structure.
- Understand the current operational model, refine this to encompass emissions and challenges within all scopes.
Step 8 – Creation of a clear roadmap will allow for progress along the journey to be monitored and amended:
- Make annual decarbonisation implementation plans, combining expenditure with prioritisation of actions.
- Facilitate progress tracking and reporting by developing accessible accelerator tools.
- Produce decarbonisation implementation plans that include projects within the 3 scopes.
- Create a cost per kg of carbon plan, understanding the eventual economic forecast of carbon output.
Every long journey begins with the first step. By clarifying the road to net zero, the destination is in sight.
EECO2 is a leading global provider of researched, tested, and proven engineered efficient and cGMP compliant solutions for the life science and high-tech industries.
Project offerings vary in size and scope, notably including delivering improvements across existing sites, considering everything from renewable energy supply to switch off optimisation plans. Clients also commission them to incorporate energy-efficient design into new capital projects through simulation and modelling. This includes reviewing plans at various stages through the design process to assess them for energy and sustainability and challenging engineering design companies to make improvements.
EECO2 hold CIBSE certified status as Low Carbon Consultants (LCC) Building Design, Building Operation and Simulation, Low Carbon Energy Assessors and ESOS Lead Assessors, and we are also members of the Energy Institute and IMEA.