The Green Room

I work for a carbon offsetting company. AMA

Hi,
I am Kai Landwehr and I am Head of Marketing at myclimate, a Swiss-based NGO focusing on climate protection and sustainability measures. We are experts in all things carbon offsetting.

Before tapping into climate protection, I worked for ten years in the sporting goods industry as a communications and brand manager for Nike. I was born and raised in Germany and I am a football aficionado, a passionate hiker and in winter times a snowboarder with “great attitude and very limited skills”.

I’ll be here to answer your questions live on 2020-10-27T16:00:00Z2020-10-27T17:00:00Z

You’ll need to sign up to the forum to take part. Once you have signed up, add this event to your calendar by clicking the three dots in the invitation above.

See you soon!

Hi Kai

Looking forward to the presentation on the 27th. I’ve been working with a client on their sustainability strategy recently and found it difficult to find a good measuring tool to benchmark carbon emissions. There seem to be lots out there but I was wondering if you could recommend any. Maybe one free and one paid for? Also any guidance on the primary objectives a business should focus on (carbon neutral or net zero, Scope 1,2 or 3 or all, carbon emissions or GHG emissions etc).

Many thanks!

Stuart

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Hello I work for an company organising events in EU and outside EU, we would like to know how we could offset our carbon emissions on our external events. How to calculate carbon emissions for the conference rooms, hotels, catering, ground transportation, conference participants……and how to offset them. Thanks

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Hi quinet

You can start by using a freely accessible event emissions calculator to calculate your emissions. On co2.myclimate.org, for example, you have to fill in as much concrete data as you have available (participants, heated or cooled area, catering, mode of transportation, material, waste). If you don’t have concrete data, the calculator offers average figures from comparable events. You get a basic footprint calculation, and you can directly offset these emissions.
If you want your result to get checked if it’s plausible and, hence, your result confirmed by our experts, contact us directly and use our software platform myclimate smart 3. Depending on the size of the event, we offer you the option to choose a specific project for your offsetting. And, you get the climate-neutral event label.

You find more information here:
https://www.myclimate.org/get-active/corporate-clients/climate-neutral-with-the-myclimate-label/climate-neutral-companies-events-products-and-services/

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Hi Stuart

Let’s start with your first question. I have to admit that it’s difficult for me to recommend specific tools I don’t know. There is no single application I found until now that makes me say: «Wow! ». But, most reliable NPOs or social businesses I know offer calculation services, like atmosfair (a German provider), Climate Partner, or Climate Care. There are some differences – as you mentioned –, but you should get a plausible result.

At myclimate, you can easily calculate your footprint on our freely accessible web-calculator co2.myclimate.org/event. It is a good option if you want to get a suitable ballpark figure and « just » want to offset. The result depends heavily on the quality of the data you provide.

We also offer a web-based service with the tool « myclimate smart 3 ». It includes additional features like a check and confirmation of your data, data storage, benchmarking, and automatically generated reports. If you calculate your emissions there and get them confirmed by our internal experts, you can receive a « climate-neutral » label for your communication.

The pricing depends on the complexity, but for events, usually, a basic version should work. The fee and implementation should range from 1500-3000£

You find more information here :
https://www.myclimate.org/get-active/corporate-clients/corporate-carbon-footprint/smart-3/

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Focus on the area with the largest impact. Any measure counts, but sometimes companies or organizations tend to focus on projects, some of them quick-wins, some not – that give them a good conscience but have only a small impact (ban plastic bottles). Tackling employee mobility behavior definitely makes a bigger difference.

However, you have to start with the calculation and the report of your emissions (we use CO2e, so taking all GHGs into account). The report should provide you a guideline where to look at first.

And, don’t forget the impact your products or services could potentially have. If you integrate sustainability questions or carbon/GHG footprint at the beginning of the product design process, you could change the game.

I hope I could answer your questions. Feel free to ask more!

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Dear Kai,
I work for an event agency based in Spain.

Do you have any good tips on how to gather information regarding audience travel and related GHG? I.e. at time of ticket purchase, at the door, post-event?

Thanks!

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Hi Kai, I’m here in the US…hoping you can guide me as this is fairly new but I imagine will become more common in the next year.

  1. What do you recommend the first steps for a planner who is asked to calculate and offset the CO2 emissions for an event?
  2. In terms of methodology, should we be calculating every input–is there a template similar to a budget template—and then use those line items?
  3. How do you partner with someone to offset? What should a planner look be asking? Are there standard costs for credits or does it depend on the project? Is there a database somewhere? Specifically if someone wants to support a project that is local or nearby?
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Dear Kai,

it would also be great to know what iniciatives you feel are really useful to bring down GHG emissions in events? Which areas should we be focusing on in order to make a difference?

I’m sure you could write an essay on this subject, but perhaps there are some top 2 or 3 actions we can employ in events that will really help us reduce our impact?

Thanks again!
Laura

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Hi Laura

I would prefer to ask at the time of ticket purchase. If you can integrate a smart solution in your software (a tick box), then it’s the easiest way of getting the relevant information. Post-event communication could also work, but from my experience, the feedback rate is sometimes low.

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Hi STM

Please look at my previous replies.

Find a provider you trust. I would recommend to do some research and test some freely available web-based calculators. Also, have a look on projects for offsetting. As a rule of thumb, projects following the Gold Standard provide best quality and contribute to many SDG. If you are specificly looking for reforestation projects, I would recommend Plan Vivo projects.

You can split it, having a provider for the calculation and one for the offsetting. But, you can also choose a one-stop-shop.

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Thanks Kai. For this client, their budget is limited so I’ll have a look at the web calculator for now we can see how it goes in year one.

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Thanks a lot for the tip Kai. From what I’ve seen audience travel is one of the main GHG contributors at an event, however I wasn’t sure which is the best way to obtain this data, thanks for your answer.

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Thanks Kai, that’s really helpful!

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This depends on the calculator. The number of participants, duration of the event are given inputs. From my perspective, most relevant data is the mode of transport of the event participants followed by accommodation, material consumption and catering. Also, the venue, it’s size, heated or cooled areas are essential. Most of the calculators provide average data, so you don’t have to research the data. The usability of a calculator is important.

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Yes, the projects are different. Different in terms of technology, but, of course, also of scale and project region. Provider like myclimate showcase their product portfolio online: https://www.myclimate.org/information/climate-protection-projects/, but also consult you according to your needs. Asking for the price per tonne is important. A very cheap offer could raise the same way questions like an extraordinary expensive on. I would focus on the project quality and impact (check the project standard) first. Secondly, I would try to find projects that fit my company in terms of the project region or the used technology.

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I’m just getting started with climate-neutral events…so this is very helpful. In terms of certifications…can you talk about that a bit?

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  1. mode of transportation. If you have an international audience, it’s tough to reduce your footprint because the flights of your guests contribute so much to your event’s footprint. But, we have seen fantastic improvements with partners like the Open Air Sankt Gallen, one of the biggest music festivals here. They made the arrival with the car extremely unattractive but supported at the same time public transport. They had a big shift in the modal split of their guests and so a strong reduction in their CO2 footprint.
  2. make vegetarian or vegan food as attractive as possible. Most of the time, people choose common food offers due to the lack of attractive alternatives. “Your power food dish made of fresh and local vegetables” sounds way better than “Vegetarian soup” (not the best example, but I hope you get what I mean).
  3. choose green electricity if possible
  4. Finally, very important: Sensitize your guest and your staff. People can make a difference, in the event planning, at the event and after the event.
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Sure. But, to be sure, please clarify:
the certifications of the offsetting projects. Or the certification of a climate-neutral event?

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Specifically certifications for a carbon neutral event. There is a ton of information out there, I am trying to navigate the official standards and what is legitimate!

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