Due to the current paradigm, firms must periodically measure their carbon footprint. According to Deloitte, 97% of firms have negatively been affected by climate change due to:
- Extreme weather conditions,
- Consumers and investors’ ESG-related pressures,
- Regulatory changes, and so on (see Figure 1).
Such a paradigm shift forces firms to adapt sustainable management practices to remain competitive. Therefore, the progress of a company’s green initiatives must be periodically assessed using a variety of metrics, and these metrics must be publicly disclosed in ESG reports to convenience investors, consumers and regulators. Unquestionably, the corporate carbon footprint and product carbon footprint are one of the most significant indicators in this regard.
But calculating a product’s or corporation’s carbon footprint is a laborious and error-prone operation. That is why, in this article, we are providing the top 7 carbon footprint calculator software to help your company remain competitive while being greener.
Figure 1: Main reasons why climate change negatively affects corporations.
3 Reasons why your company needs a carbon footprint calculator tool
Calculating carbon-related metrics accurately is difficult for firms since:
1. You need to know too many specific emission factors
The formula for carbon footprint is multiplying units of business operations by certain emission variables (see Figure 2). Let’s use Figure 2’s example to better understand the formula.
Assume your field sales team uses 13,500 gallons of oil this month. To calculate the carbon footprint of the sales team’s fuel use, you have to know how much greenhouse gas (GHG) is produced by consuming 1 gallon of oil (which is equivalent to 8,887 times 0,001 metric tons CO2/gallon, according to EPA).
Notice that to calculate corporate carbon footprint, or product carbon footprint, you have to know numerous, specific emission factors, such as:
- Kilowatt-hour emission factor for power use. This varies from one place to another and from one time to another because the weight of green energy generation within the total energy supply changes accordingly.
- Emission factor for a metric cup of natural gas consumption.
- Emission factors of kilogram of raw materials you use for production etc.
You can use open data bases such as EPA, Defra, Higg Index, etc. to get these specific emission factors. But it’s a time consuming task, since such information is already available on carbon footprint calculators’ data-set.
Figure 2: Carbon footprint Formula
2. Measuring scope 3 GHG emissions is easier with carbon footprint software
Carbon emissions from supply chain operations in the upstream and downstream fall within scope 3 GHG emissions. For instance, if you utilize intermediary goods in your manufacturing, suppliers’ energy use for production and the delivery of intermediary goods will have an impact on your carbon footprint.
As you can notice, it is difficult to calculate this indirect GHG emission because you need data from your suppliers and clients. Carbon footprint calculators can help with this problem by:
- A few carbon footprint software, (like SAP’s), can integrate with ERP platforms. These ERP systems give your businesses access to your upstream and downstream supply chains if your clients and suppliers use these tools, and let you see their data.
- Therefore, you can effortlessly calculate scope 3 GHG emissions.
- Since carbon calculator tools are used by numerous companies across numerous industries, they have vast database for showcasing the relationship between carbon footprint, and factors such as:
- The industry the company is active in.
- The company’s number of employees.
- The country in which the company’s active in, .
- The delivery method and distance of intermediary and final products, and more.
Thus, they can estimate your Scope 3 emission with more confidence and accuracy than if you were to do it manually.
3. You can easily see your current pain points by using carbon footprint tools
After calculating your carbon footprint, you should analyze it to identify areas that need improvement and take steps to address them to reduce your carbon footprint. Thanks to their data visualization feature, these carbon footprint calculators can help your company. Thus, you can more effectively decide investment strategies towards net zero.
Figure 3: Example of how carbon footprint calculators visualize data.
Moreover, some carbon footprint calculator tools have AI capabilities that can suggest green recommendations as they interact more with inflows of data.
Top 7 Carbon Footprint Calculator Software/Tools
In this section we will introduce top 7 carbon footprint software for businesses:
1. SAP/product carbon footprint analytics
Through the value chain, SAP’s product carbon footprint calculator assists firms in measuring their GHG emissions. Investigations of product carbon footprints can be integrated with SAP S4HANA’s ERP system that keeps track of different business processes. As a result, it becomes reasonably simple to collect data for a diverse set of business activities and supplier operations (if they want to cooperate).
Organizations can discover the activities that release the most GHG into the atmosphere thanks to the CO2 monitoring dashboard. This makes remediation easier.
Lastly, SAP provides additional tools such as truck loading software and route optimizer to support the sustainability of its business partners. As a result, your supply chain sustainability can be improved.
2. Boston Consulting Group/CO2 AI
CO2 AI is the AI-powered carbon footprint software developed by consulting company BCG. Despite taking into account the carbon footprint of the organizations, CO2AI is able to simulate the effects of intended actions on the GHG emission of businesses.
CO2 AI also supports companies for tracking progress and reporting their carbon footprint.
3. Carbon Trust/carbon footprinting software
Carbon Trust, a sustainability consulting firm, created carbon footprinting software. It is a cloud-based solution that can connect to your organization’s corporate network. Software helps your company evaluate scope 1, scope 2, and scope 3 GHG emissions.
Carbon footprinting software assists companies in evaluating their circularity by supporting them in evaluating their water and waste footprints.
4. Sphera/GaBi Software
Sphera produces ESG solution tools for businesses. GaBi software is their carbon footprint calculator. GaBi software can:
- Measure organizations’ carbon footprint.
- Utilize hotspot analysis to map risks and identify weak areas to help businesses to prioritize their actions.
5. Climatiq/Climatiq API
You can integrate Climatiq API into your devices and data center. By doing so, you can benefit from their solution that collects specific emission factors from different databases. Thus they help organizations to calculate their carbon footprint.
Co2nnectorPro is a cloud-based software that is designed to measure the carbon footprint of firms and individuals. Their carbon calculator supports the measurement of all scope 1, scope 2 and scope 3 GHG emissions.
7. Carbon Footprint/Sustrax
Sustrax is another cloud-based option for handling your environmental reporting needs. Sustrax is adaptable and can grow to suit your requirements. Organizations can use Sustrax to measure their GHG emissions and get assistance in disclosing their ESG reports.
You can read our Top 10 Sustainability Case Studies and Success Stories article to find out inspirational sustainability case studies.
If you have questions about calculating your carbon footprint or carbon footprint calculator tools you can reach us:
This article was drafted by former AIMultiple industry analyst Görkem Gençer.
Cem has been the principal analyst at AIMultiple since 2017. AIMultiple informs hundreds of thousands of businesses (as per similarWeb) including 60% of Fortune 500 every month.
Cem's work has been cited by leading global publications including Business Insider, Forbes, Washington Post, global firms like Deloitte, HPE, NGOs like World Economic Forum and supranational organizations like European Commission. You can see more reputable companies and media that referenced AIMultiple.
Throughout his career, Cem served as a tech consultant, tech buyer and tech entrepreneur. He advised businesses on their enterprise software, automation, cloud, AI / ML and other technology related decisions at McKinsey & Company and Altman Solon for more than a decade. He also published a McKinsey report on digitalization.
He led technology strategy and procurement of a telco while reporting to the CEO. He has also led commercial growth of deep tech company Hypatos that reached a 7 digit annual recurring revenue and a 9 digit valuation from 0 within 2 years. Cem's work in Hypatos was covered by leading technology publications like TechCrunch and Business Insider.
Cem regularly speaks at international technology conferences. He graduated from Bogazici University as a computer engineer and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.
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