Carbon footprint, corporate strategy


Courtesy of Greenstone+

Virgin Group includes nearly seventy companies across a diverse range of sectors from aviation to wine distribution, each facing different carbon management challenges. The companies range from small office based organisations with a few employees to large multinationals with thousands of employees.

Greenstone was commissioned by Virgin Group to undertake a carbon mapping exercise to identify carbon intensive components of the Group. Greenstone conducted a series of interviews with relevant staff in each company (e.g. staff in CSR/environmental managers etc) to gauge the level of carbon management work already undertaken. 

Companies were then split into those with a large, medium or small impact/yet to operate. Calculations based on benchmark data and generic emissions factors were used to estimate the impact of the latter group. Work then focussed on the companies that represent 80% of the Group’s emissions.

Greenstone developed organisational and process diagrams to show the organisational boundaries to include all emission sources required under the GHG Protocol (scope 1 and 2). Given the nature of Virgin’s operations and potential GHG emissions, employee business travel (a scope 3 emission) was also included in the calculation.  Where no carbon footprinting work had been undertaken, interviewees were sent a data collection form to get fuel, electricity, and refrigerant consumption data and information on business travel.

The second phase of work will involve the development of case studies of particular companies and investigating the extent of their scope 3 emissions.

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