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How to become a net zero business

Measuring, reducing and offsetting your business’ emissions

Every day a business’ normal activities, like driving cars, printing documents, using electricity and generating waste, produce greenhouse gas (GhG) emissions. These emissions are released into the atmosphere and have an impact on the environment.

If you are looking to reduce your impact on the environment, you can reach net zero by calculating your business’ GhG emissions, reducing emissions and then offsetting the unavoidable emissions through environmentally friendly initiatives.

Carbon active

*Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Organisations, Figure 1

Three steps to becoming a net zero business

What is the difference between net zero and being carbon neutral?

The terms ‘net zero’ and ‘carbon neutral’ are used by many organisations and government in various ways.

For the purpose of this website, the terms have been used interchangeably, and are defined as ‘reducing emissions where possible and compensating for the remainder by investing in carbon offset projects to achieve net zero overall emissions’.

Offsets are generated from an activity that prevents, reduces or removes greenhouse gas emissions from being released into the atmosphere.

What are greenhouse gas emissions?

Greenhouse gas emissions are gases in the Earth’s atmosphere that have an influence on the earth’s energy balance.

These gases include carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) and nitrogen trifluoride (NF3).

Certification is available for carbon neutral businesses

Certification that your business, product or service has met the requirements of the Australian Government’s Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard can be achieved through the Climate Active Program.

Climate Active certification provides proof towards a claim that your brand has achieved carbon neutrality, and sends a clear signal that your business is serious about addressing climate change and is committed to sustainability, innovation, and industry leadership.

The Climate Active website provides guidance on the certification process, a business case, case studies and a list of registered consultants that can assist with your certification.

Further information on making environmental claims about your business, product or service is available from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

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