- 11th October 2018
- Posted by: Joanne Woodhouse
- Category: Blog
The new mandatory Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) comes into effect in April 2019. This Regulation will require large companies to report their annual carbon emissions and to publish these results openly on Companies House. The UK Government argues that mandatory reporting will drive behaviour change in businesses by raising internal awareness of energy efficiency and increasing transparency and accountability of operations.
The recently published Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report firmly identifies the importance of reducing emissions to mitigate against rises in global temperatures and subsequent impacts. Businesses have a key role to play in reducing emissions by embedding sustainability into their operations and services. The new SECR Regulation will hold businesses accountable for their energy usage and carbon emissions which will increase understanding and reduce emissions following organisational and behavioural change.
Carbon reporting in relation to climate change
On Friday 5 October Tam Bowyer, Assistant Analyst, attended an Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA) event hosted by Muckle LLP in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. Anna-Lisa Mills, Director of True North Sustainability, delivered a presentation which was co-written with Nick Blyth, Policy and Engagement Lead at IEMA, detailing the specific requirements of SECR and the importance of carbon reporting in relation to climate change.
“The presentation was extremely engaging and delivered important information on how to ensure compliance with future regulation and the responsibility of businesses to lead in the reduction of emissions” commented Tam.
Following the presentation on SECR and carbon reporting standards, Stephen Prior, Director of Forest Carbon, spoke about how his organisation creates woodland and peatland in return for credits which are brought by businesses that have exhausted routes to decrease their carbon emissions any further. Woodland and peatland are extremely valuable natural capital which act as carbon ‘sinks’ and sequester carbon from the atmosphere. Carbon sequestration schemes like Forest Carbon are becoming increasingly important in emission reduction strategies and these ecosystems also increase resilience to flooding events through natural flood management as well as increasing biodiversity.
“The IEMA event was extremely insightful and a great opportunity to network with likeminded individuals who are passionate about embedding sustainability within their organisations” added Tam.
With the latest IPCC report concluding that global emissions need to decline by 45% from 2010 levels to 2030 to safeguard against temperature increases above 1.5°C, it is now down to governments, businesses and individuals to take responsibility for their emissions and resource consumption.