Josh Weber, co-founder and executive chairman of nZero, a Nevada company that tracks Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions for large organizations, explains the complexities of tracking corporate greenhouse gas emissions. Tracking emissions is the first step toward businesses taking responsibility for the previously unacknowledged environmental and social costs of delivering products and services. It will be some time before this information is widely available in useful form for consumers and citizens to help make decisions about the products or services they buy or the government policies they support. nZero’s technology, along with those of other emerging carbon tracking tools, is a critical piece of the environmental puzzle we each need to understand.
A recent study by the nonprofit As You Sow of the 55 largest companies in the U.S. found that only three, Microsoft, PepsiCo, and Ecolab Inc, earned an A-level grade; Google and Apple received B and B- grades, respectively, and most of the rest, 84% of companies are flunking out of the race to head off climate change. Carbon tracking is mostly restricted to Scope 1 and 2 emissions, the direct and indirect emissions associated with power used by a company. MSCI Research reported in September 2020 that only 18% of the firms it follows are reporting their scope 3 emissions — we’ll explore why these emissions are difficult to track. You can find out more at nzero.com.