We’ve updated our certification scheme! Keep reading to find out the benefits of certification, and (for those who have been with us for a while) how it has changed.
Why get “certified”?
Who doesn’t like getting credit for doing something right? We hope our certification scheme rewards businesses who challenge themselves to be more sustainable and encourages them to keep going! It’s also a way for businesses to showcase their increasing commitment to accountability, action, and leadership to their customers. We also hope that businesses start amiably competing with each other to earn different badges.
If every organisation—even the smallest business—takes these steps, we will make incredible progress on slowing climate change, and moving toward a clean, verdant world for all.
What it means: Carbon Aware companies have a holistic understanding of their environmental impacts. They have taken the initiative to assess the carbon and water footprint of every purchase they make. This provides a strong foundation to manage their impacts and make choices that enable them to improve over time.
Certification requirements: Companies must assess at least their past year of purchases using the Carbon Analytics platform, and have their results verified and validated by a member of the Carbon Analytics certification team, to ensure that you have accurately categorised your suppliers and your footprint is representative of your impacts. This is free.
What it means: Carbon Efficient companies take meaningful action by switching to renewable sources of heating and electricity, such as wind and solar power. This creates larger demand for and greater affordability of renewable energy.
Certification requirements: Companies must switch to (or already use) 100% renewable energy.
What it means: Carbon Offsetter companies take accountability for the emissions they create by purchasing carbon offsets for their full “cradle-to-gate” (direct organizational + supply chain) footprint. This pays for projects that help to reduce the amount of carbon being released to the atmosphere (e.g. by funding efficient, low-emissions cooking stoves in communities that otherwise cannot afford them), or to take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere (e.g. by converting land into protected, forested areas).
Certification requirements: Companies must first achieve the Carbon Aware certification (or otherwise calculate and provide documentation of their full cradle-to-gate footprint), then offset their footprint with an accredited carbon offset provider.
For an introduction to what carbon credits are, how they work, and some of their benefits and challenges, check out our Carbon Credits 101 post.
What it means: Carbon Advocates take a leadership role to usher in the low-carbon economy by recruiting other companies to measure, improve and share their environmental impacts. This increases awareness, and spurs the rest of the economy to engage on this critical issue.
Certification requirements: Companies must successfully recruit 5 companies to the Carbon Analytics platform, and these companies must in turn demonstrate that they are progressing their low-carbon journey by achieving one of the aforementioned Carbon Analytics certifications.
How is this scheme different from our original scheme?
Our original scheme had three sequential steps — in other words, you couldn’t attempt Step 3, without completing Steps 1 and 2.
Our newer version has four badges, and they generally don’t require earning one badge as a requirement for earning another. (Except Carbon Offsetter: a business needs to be Carbon Aware first.)
We did this to acknowledge that different companies start their journey at different places, and to encourage companies to do what they can as soon as they can.
Are you ready to be a sustainability leader? It’s as easy as 1,2,3,4! To get started on collecting your badges, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or via our website’s contact form.