Firms unsure of legal duty to report emissions

A third of companies are unsure of their legal carbon reporting requirements, a study has shown.

The discovery was made in the first ever carbon accounting survey of 1,000 companies globally, by business software supplier Eipicor. The study also revealed 58 per cent of business leaders had not even heard of the term “carbon accounting”.

The UK is one of the first countries to implement a statutory reporting obligation on environmental emissions.

Last year the Carbon Reduction Commitment was introduced which forced organisations that spend more than £500,000 annually on energy bills to account for, report and pay for energy-related emissions.

However, according to the Epicor survey, the majority of businesses globally (85 per cent), failed to understand the level of carbon their company had consumed in the past six months.

Businesses need to prepare now for carbon reporting, warned Chris Purcell, product marketing manager of Epicor, as legislation is continuing to be introduced internationally including a carbon tax in Australia and upcoming regulations in California.

“Carbon reporting will happen irrespective of any personal opinions about global warming; those businesses that prepare now for the reporting that will be legally required of them in the near future will have a clear competitive advantage over laggards.

“Energy management is not a distraction to a company’s core business. Businesses can gain cost and energy savings from sustainability investments and the growth of emission trading schemes will only increase the need for companies to understand how carbon accounting will impact their bottom line.”

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