Sustainability

Our Covid-19 response

We appreciate that 2020 was an exceptional year for your Planet Mark certification and cannot be thought of as typical for companies that have pivoted from office-based to a home-based workforce. We have found ways to overcome the impact of Covid-19 for Planet Mark members and ways to adapt to changes that took place.

March 2, 2021
Words:
Rima Trofimovaite
Images:
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Here are some answers to questions you may have about your certification and how it may be impacted by Covid-19:

How will you calculate our YE2020 carbon footprint when we have shifted from an office-based to a home-based workforce?

We will calculate your carbon footprint regarding your building energy consumption, waste and recycling, water, paper procurement, fleet and business travel and freight (where appropriate) as normal. Your 2020 carbon footprint will then be compared to your 2019 figure. Due to the reduction in business activity, we are anticipating that most of our members will see a significant reduction in their carbon footprint total in 2020 and hence will re-certify to Planet Mark. 

We will also estimate a home office carbon footprint for your home-based workforce. Although we will display this figure (demarcated) in your certification report for your information, we will not add it to your total company carbon footprint in YE2020.  

Currently, we are not accounting for the change in commuting levels between 2019 and 2020, but we will be looking to build a methodology to reflect the reduction in commuting in 2020.

How will you calculate our YE2020 carbon footprint if we normally work from home with no office building?

We will calculate the carbon footprint of your business activities as normal and, for your home-based workforce, we will also include an estimate of the home-office carbon footprint following our homeworking methodology. 

How does Planet Mark deal with existing members who expect their footprint to increase as economic recovery takes place?

To address this challenge in cases where footprint increases, we will be applying our Emissions Banking approach. Under this methodology, emissions reductions achieved in YE2020 beyond the minimum reduction of 2.5% can be carried forwards by up to three years and applied against potential increases in emissions due to business activity returning to pre-pandemic levels. 

How does Planet Mark deal with existing members who feel their footprint will have increased during the pandemic?

We will calculate your carbon footprint as we have in previous years and for the comparator to 2019 we will look at both the absolute change in total footprint and an appropriate intensity metric for your business. So, for example, if your total footprint has increased due to an uptick in sales of your product, we may base your comparison on the average carbon footprint of production. 

For new members whose first carbon footprint will be YE2020, how does Planet Mark factor in what happens next year if business gets back to normal and our footprint increases?

Being in year two of the certification process you do not have to worry about re-certification via a carbon reduction, as in the second year of Planet Mark membership you are not required to reduce your footprint, but you must have a clear plan and commitment for reduction in future years. Hence it is in YE2022 that we will expect to see a minimum reduction of 2.5% in your footprint, compared to the previous year’s footprint.  

What happens if we have had a normal year in 2020, with our offices open and business as normal?

If you have not suffered undue disruption in your business activities throughout year end 2020 (YE2020), with your offices open as normal, or near normal and a minimal number of staff having to work from home, we will calculate your carbon footprint as we would normally do. The data you provide regarding your office/warehouse/retail building energy; waste and water; business travel and freight will be used to calculate your footprint as normal.  

Estimating emissions from home working is very new. The evidence base is evolving and we will continue to monitor developments in methodologies used to calculate home office carbon emissions before formally including it in your footprint.

If you have any questions on how Covid-19 has impacted your certification please get in touch.