Challenge, solution and resutls
Achieving carbon neutral status
Peterson Energy Logistics’ journey to carbon neutral certification.
Peterson Energy Logistics set a target to be the first energy logistics business to offer a carbon neutral service on an international scale by the end of 2022.
Enabling Peterson to quantitively measure their Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions across all global locations and offset these emissions through verifiable and accredited carbon offset projects. By working with digital consultancy Core29, Peterson was able to reduce the hours required to measure emissions from 838 hours to 502 hours.
Peterson achieved carbon neutral status, verified under PAS 2060, in November 2022.
In 2016, Peterson implemented an energy management system certified through the ISO 50001 standard that required the business to document and manage their direct Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions.
This enabled Peterson not only to meet but to exceed the requirements of the Energy Savings and Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) regulations 2014, which companies are required to comply with.
In 2020, the business felt it could go a step further and offer carbon neutral logistics by the end of 2022 prior to achieving its long-term net zero ambitions.
Peterson wanted to ensure that the process of offering carbon neutral logistics was verifiable and accurate. It was also considered how this could benefit the company with the Streamlined Energy and Carbon Requirement (SECR) regulation 2018, under which companies are required to report global GHG emissions and intensity metrics in their annual reports, as per Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting.
In addition, SECR also requires companies to report total energy use and energy efficiency actions taken. An overview of the available standards was required to be investigated to allow Peterson to follow a framework for achieving carbon neutral certification before the end of 2022.
The Peterson HSEQ team took full ownership over the management of the carbon neutral process. The following steps were taken to achieve carbon neutral certification.
- The internationally recognised PAS 2060 standard framework was chosen, and a third-party certification body selected to verify the process.
- An initial UK site was selected for testing the procedure and verification process against, achieving certification in August 2021.
- A further four UK sites were selected for testing group verification against which achieved certification in November 2021.
- The final stage of the testing process selected a non-UK site, to identify any country dependent differences which also achieved certification in
- After the success of the first six sites, group certification for all 31 Peterson operated sites began the process in April 2022.
- From each of the 31 sites, a site member was elected to collect the necessary carbon data and submit this information to the HSEQ team for verification.
- Once internally verified, the overall carbon data was manipulated to develop a group carbon management plan that outlined the framework Peterson would follow to reduce emissions over the next year.
- The process was fully documented within the Qualifying Explanatory Statement (QES) and verified by a third-party certification body over a
period of five months.
- The PAS 2060 process had five distinct stages: data collection, internal verification, carbon management plan development, qualifying explanatory statement documentation and external verification. Out of the five stages, the data collection phase was the most demanding due to the substantial volume of data required for the selected subject.
All the data collected can be categorised into the following categories:
- Fuel consumption data
- Refrigerant leakages
- Site and home working electricity consumption
- Procured goods
- Capital goods
- Procured services
- Transportation and distribution
- Transmissions and distribution losses
- Waste generated
- Business travel
- Employee commuting
As Peterson had previously documented and managed Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions through its certified energy management system, the collection of the Scope 3 emissions proved the most challenging, with the following key difficulties identified:
- Locating of invoices and receipts and structure of expense forms proved problematic
- Manual calculation of distance of all individual journeys undertaken by staff
- Required weights for each individual item procured
- Required classification of material in each individual item procured
- Employee confidentiality over their commute to work
- Identification of transport type and mileage of all third parties travelling to site
- Locating all travel used for an individual on a
business trip with supporting evidence
- Alignment of correct conversion factors with each individual data point collected, particularly for procured goods and travel
The difficulties encountered were unprecedented and would have required additional resources and an extended time frame to be implemented.
However, Peterson engaged Core29 – a digital consultancy – to look at ways to streamline the process of capturing the information required, to reduce the
time it would take and to make the whole process more efficient.
Core29 was subsequently able to provide Peterson with:
- An automated, repeatable, simplified, and efficient method of collecting data and extracting required data from invoices
- An automated system for calculating miles covered, carbon emissions and other required calculations
- A visual report of the data on a business intelligence (BI) tool to help management make data-driven decisions and for audit purposes
- A proposed improvement on the data entry process which would further increase data efficiency and the accuracy of the reports
- By implementing this, the number of hours spent on gathering information was reduced from 838 hours to 502 hours.
Peterson achieved Carbon Neutral certification on the 30th November 2022, becoming one of the first energy logistics businesses offering a fully carbon neutral service.
Peterson has a large portfolio of business activities requiring extensive data to calculate the company’s global carbon footprint. During the eight months that the process was active for, many inefficiencies were experienced.
Due to the large scope of the project, the data collection process was labour-intensive and time consuming and as a result, additional resource was required to complete this within the required time frame. As this is an annually recurring process, it was imperative that improved efficiencies could be introduced to support an automated process where possible.
All lessons learned were documented and investigated for solutions by Peterson’s IT innovation company, Core29. Core29 provided Peterson with a professional, cost-effective service by recommending multiple solutions to recurring problems.
It is estimated that the services provided by Core29 will reduce Peterson’s scope of work by approximately 40% in future years. This will be achieved by automating processes around information gathering and collating, allowing for greater visibility of data and more proactive decision making.
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