Scopes of Carbon Emissions

Scope 1 emissions are emissions from sources that are owned or controlled by the organization such as:

  • Stationary Combustion: from the combustion of fossil fuels (e.g. natural gas, fuel oil, propane, etc.) for comfort heating or other industrial applications

  • Mobile Combustion: from the combustion of fossil fuels (e.g. gasoline, diesel) used in the operation of vehicles or other forms of mobile transportation

  • Process Emissions: emissions released during the company’s own manufacturing process in specific industry sectors (e.g. cement, iron and steel, ammonia)

  • Fugitive Emissions: unintentional release of GHG from sources including refrigerant systems and natural gas distribution

Scope 2 emissions

Indirect emissions associated with the generation of imported/purchased  electricity, steam or other sources of energy (e.g. chilled or heated water) generated upstream from the organization

Scope 3 emissions are a consequence of the operations of an organization, but are not directly owned or controlled by the organization. 

Upstream Scope 3 Emissions include

  • Purchased goods and services (extraction, production and transportation)

  • Capital Goods (extraction, production and transportation)

  • Fuels and energy related actives (those that haven’t already been included in Scope 1 or Scope ) 

  • Upstream transportation and distribution 

  • Waste generated in operations 

  • Business Travel

  • Employee Commuting

  • Upstream Leased Assets

Downstream Scope 3 Emissions include 

  • Downstream transportation and distribution

  • Use of sold products

  • End-of-life treatment of sold products ​​

A Scope 3 analysis can vary depending on the parameters a company chooses to include. There is no general consensus on how to set the limits of this scope. If you’re curious about what to include in your scope, please reference this report which outlines parameters that may be included in an analysis. Because there are no set boundaries and some of the data is difficult to come by, it is highly dependent on the individual or corporation to decide what to include for their analysis.

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