A call to wood manufacturers for carbon action
Friday 2 Oct 2020
The briefing note outlines two key steps, including 1) calculating the carbon footprint of wood product manufacturing and 2) setting science-based targets to achieve carbon reductions in line with internationally agreed ambitions. It also explores the broader context around climate change and outlines the growing importance of and demand for low-carbon suppliers and products.
According to the World Green Building Council (2019), buildings account for 39% of global energy related carbon emissions. Approximately 28% of these emissions derive from operational emissions (energy needed for heating, cooling and power) and the remaining 11% from materials and construction.
In the past, sustainable building design has focused on reducing carbon emissions from its operations. However, as strategies to reduce operational emissions mature, carbon from processes to manufacture materials will be much more important. Known as embodied carbon, these emissions represent the next frontier in combatting climate change.
In fact, the World Green Building Council’s vision is that by 2030, all new buildings, infrastructure and renovations will have at least 40% less embodied carbon with significant upfront carbon reduction, and all new buildings must be net zero operational carbon. By 2050, new buildings, infrastructure and renovations will have net zero embodied carbon, and all buildings, including existing buildings, must be net zero operational carbon.
Within the ever-evolving landscape and growing demand for low-carbon solutions, the Australian wood manufacturing sector has the opportunity to lead. By undertaking a carbon foot-printing exercise and setting Science Based Targets, wood suppliers will be able to meet growing demand for low-carbon solutions and differentiate from alternative materials.
The project participants are calling on wood product manufacturers and the wider timber industry to understand their carbon footprint. A carbon footprint documents the total greenhouse gas emissions that a company is responsible for, including its activities and its value chain. A carbon footprint provides not only a measure of “how much carbon”, but also what is driving emissions, with a view to inform strategies to reduce the company’s contribution to climate change.
The project participants are calling on wood product manufacturers and the wider timber industry to set carbon reduction targets aligned to the climate science. Science-Based Targets (SBTs) provide companies with a clearly defined pathway to future-proof growth by specifying how much and how quickly they need to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.
A footprint and target-setting tool is available for download on the NIFPI website, along with a guide on how to take action. Additional training webinars will also be provided and hosted by Edge Environment in mid-October. Webinar 1 will focus on an overview of industry drivers and project outcomes, while Webinar 2 will provide a training on how to use the carbon footprint and target-setting tool. Please contact Maisie Auld, project manager and Head of Carbon & Climate Resilience at Edge Environment, ( firstname.lastname@example.org) for the webinar link, more information or to get involved.
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Source: Edge Environment
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