In March, Asiakastieto, a company providing business and consumer information services, launched a CO2 calculator as part of its ESG service produced in cooperation with OpenCO2.net. The CO2 calculator allows companies to calculate their so-called own emissions, i.e. scope 1 and 2 emissions and scope 3 emissions related to waste and business travel.
The project started in early 2022, when the team at Asiakastieto was finalizing the soon-to-be-launched ESG service. "One of the questions in the ESG service was related to the company's emissions, and we wondered how many companies had calculated their emissions and could answer that question. We realized that SMEs, in particular, might need help in determining their emissions. We wanted to find a calculator that could be linked to our ESG service," says Riku Salminen, Development Director at Asiakastieto.
Salminen started looking for different service providers, and after a quick Google search he found OpenCO2.net. He decided to call Sari Siitonen, the CEO of OpenCO2net, and it quickly became clear that the company was capable of implementing the easy-to-use, browser-based emissions calculator that Asiakastieto was looking for.
For Asiakastieto, it was crucial that the CO2 Calculator would be based on the GHG Protocol Corporate standard and that you could trust the data the calculator provides. According to Salminen, OpenCO2.net stood out because it has been validated by DNV. In addition, the service includes its own extensive and reliable emissions database, which is used in the CO2 Calculator of Asiakastieto. Another important factor was the ability to build the CO2 Calculator in line with Asiakastieto's brand image. The price of the CO2 Calculator was also a key issue, and now companies can access the service for €365 per year.
Salminen sees the CO2 Calculator's strength as being industry-independent. The service is suitable for all companies, and is particularly useful for SMEs, most of which do not have a sustainability department or other resources to allocate on emissions calculations. Most large and listed companies have a very thorough understanding of emissions accounting, but the CO2 calculator is particularly useful for companies that have not yet done any emissions accounting and want to get started.
Asiakastieto’s CO2 Calculator is likely to provide SMEs with sufficient information about their emissions, for example in relation to financing or procurement tenders.
In financing negotiations, a company is in a better position to negotiate when it has reliable information on its emissions and a plan to reduce emissions. The EU taxonomy requires financial institutions to emphasize sustainability when making financing decisions. In procurement tenders emissions information is increasingly included in the requirements and, according to Salminen, this year in particular, emissions information is becoming a central part of various procurement procedures.
"Those companies that have already calculated their emissions and succeeded to reduce emissions will have an advantage in procurement," he says.
In addition to finance and sales, companies can use the CO2 Calculator's emissions data to improve their sustainability performance.
"First you need to know what your emissions are and then you can start setting climate targets and start reducing your own direct emissions," Salminen says.
Asiakastieto's CO2 Calculator provides good information on the company's own emissions, i.e. scope 1 and 2, plus emissions from waste and business travel from scope 3. The information provided by the CO2 Calculator enables the company to develop a more climate-friendly business and also to communicate emissions and emission reductions to its customers. According to Salminen, for more and more consumers, sustainability is an important part of their purchasing decision.
Salminen sees emissions data becoming one of the key performance indicators for companies in the future.
"When companies publish their annual report, I think that in addition to turnover and profit, I will see CO2 emissions data in the coming years. Hopefully, companies will in time make emission reductions one of the KPIs alongside profit and turnover, and also add the new metric to management and staff targets and reward system."
The CO2 Calculator is based on the GHG Protocol Corporate standard. "You need to be able to trust the data. The need for reliable emissions data is increasing, for example, with the EU Green Claims Directive and the CSRD. CO2 emission calculation and auditing will be an important part of business in the future, and also an important industry," Salminen concludes.
Asiakastieto was pleased with the cooperation with OpenCO2.net.
"Right from the start there was good and open communication between us. Then, when we started to implement the calculator and integrate it in our ESG service, we further intensified our cooperation, introducing a common Teams channel and weekly meetings. These allowed us to quickly get answers to open questions from both sides." Salminen says. The project utilized agile methods and the strengths of both companies. Those issues that didn't have a solution were resolved smoothly as the project progressed.
"All in all, I am delighted with this collaboration. The end result is a well-tested and functional product that you can trust." Salminen concludes.
Building the CO2 calculator for Asiakastieto and their customers was a very interesting and enjoyable project for OpenCO2.net team as well.
"We are very pleased with the cooperation with Asiakastieto and with their proactive approach to provide an easy-to-use CO2 calculator for SMEs as well," says Sari Siitonen, founder and CEO of OpenCO2net.
OpenCO2.net provides companies with customized calculators. Tailored to your company's needs, the calculator is a cost-effective way to determine the carbon footprint of your business, products or events, for example. For the calculator, we map all emission sources relevant to the company, define the boundary, select reliable emission factors and do the rest of the work needed for the calculation. When the calculator is ready to use, all that the customer needs to do is to enter the correct data into the calculator. The CO2 Calculator, implemented in cooperation with Asiakastieto, is an example of a customized calculator that serves several companies instead of one.
Photo: Suomen Asiakastieto Oy / Enento Group
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