What are Scope 2 Greenhouse Gas Emissions?

What are emissions and why do we need to control them?

Burning fuels creates greenhouse gas emissions, such as carbon dioxide, which drift up to the stratosphere and trap heat within the Earth’s atmosphere. The more fossil fuel we burn the more heat is retained. The heat becomes an energy source that drives stronger and more extreme weather – climate change. Once produced, these emissions can take 300 to 1000 years to be removed from our atmosphere.[1]

What are Scope 2 emissions?

These are indirect greenhouse gas emissions that include purchased and consumed electricity, heat, steam or cooling. In other words, these emissions are indirect because they are generated by sources controlled by another organisation but are as a result of activities carried out by the reporting organisation.

At least one third of global GHG emissions are as a result of the generation of electricity and heat. Many UK businesses use energy supplied from the grid and can keep track of their individual consumption and carbon footprint via their utility bills.


Common issues of Scope 2 emissions 

  • Using more electricity than needed by lighting and heating empty buildings
  • Poor operation of buildings by untrained staff
  • Confusion around which energy tariffs are truly green (hyperlink link to renewable energy blog) and which cause pollution.

How can we reduce Scope 2 emissions?

These emissions can be reduced by cutting down demand for electricity and shifting energy supply to alternative low-carbon resources. Streamlined energy and carbon reporting (SECR) (hyperlink link to Streamlined energy and carbo reporting page) can strengthen the management of energy consumption within a company by optimising operational control. Consider switching energy tariffs to a greener one, remember that the energy that you use is not necessarily as clean as you would expect as fossil fuel plants are also connected to the grid, therefore it is important to offset energy where possible.


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