Leading organizations form the Carbon Call to address reliability and interoperability in carbon accounting for the planet
Participating organizations and signatories to focus on solving companies’ carbon emissions and removal accounting challenges for a net zero future
SAN FRANCISCO – February 10, 2022 – Over 20 leading organizations on Thursday announced an initiative to accelerate the development of reliable and interoperable carbon emissions accounting, which is necessary to help the world reach net zero by midcentury. The Carbon Call mobilizes collective action, investment and resources from scientific, corporate, philanthropic and intergovernmental organizations to enable access to data and science that is reliable and up to date and can be easily exchanged among carbon accounting systems.
Reliable measurement and accounting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is critical to climate accountability and attribution. According to an analysis by The Washington Post, the gap in underreported GHG emissions “ranges from at least 8.5 billion to as high as 13.3 billion tons a year.” Today, carbon accounting suffers from data quality issues, measurement and reporting inconsistencies, siloed platforms, and infrastructure challenges. This makes it difficult to compare, combine and share reliable data, particularly for companies.
The Carbon Call uncovers and addresses gaps in existing global carbon accounting systems, focusing on carbon removal and land sector, methane and indirect emissions. The Carbon Call will work collectively to identify where more accurate information is needed to improve reliability and advance interoperability by design — both in carbon accounting reports (or ledgers) and the data ecosystems that support them.
The Carbon Call is hosted by ClimateWorks Foundation and participating organizations include Capricorn Investment Group, Climate Change AI, Corporate Leaders Group Europe, Global Carbon Project, Global Council for Science and the Environment, International Science Council, LF Energy, Linux Foundation, Microsoft, Mila, Skoll Foundation, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, United Nations Environment Programme (collaborating organization), and United Nations Foundation. Participating organizations of the Carbon Call work to advance the development of universal accounting methodological standards, enable expanded access to reliable GHG emissions and removal data, and strengthen the interoperability of digital accounting infrastructures.
Signatories to the Carbon Call support the enabling conditions needed for a more reliable global system of interoperable carbon accounting reports (or ledgers). To that end, signatories commit to report GHG emissions and offset information comprehensively, including all scopes and classes of GHG emissions, annually and transparently. Signatories include Capricorn Investment Group, EY, GSK, KPMG, Microsoft, and Wipro.
The outputs of the coalition will be widely available.
What participating organizations and signatories are saying
Capricorn Investment Group
“We invest billions of dollars into climate solutions, and we are now deploying significant capital into carbon removal in order to meet our net zero commitment. But this only registers at the scale of the climate crisis if we can keep track of the global balance between greenhouse gas emissions and removals. We are joining Carbon Call in order to support the creation of a transparent and science-based ledger for carbon accounting. This will be an important building block for net zero investing.”Ion Yadigaroglu, Managing Partner, Capricorn Investment Group
“To avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we must deliver on effective infrastructure this decade that supports credibility of net-zero targets. Accurate carbon accounting is fundamental to holding polluters accountable and knowing where focus on climate action is most needed. The Carbon Call will build on existing efforts by bringing together civil, business, and philanthropic actors to accelerate the development of more reliable and interoperable systems for tracking emissions.”Surabi Menon, Vice President of Global Intelligence, ClimateWorks Foundation
Climate Change AI
“The mission of Climate Change AI is to catalyze impactful work at the intersection of climate change and machine learning. Machine learning has already proven to be helpful in gathering data on emissions and carbon stock, and may be of use in supporting verification and assessment of progress on emissions reductions. We are excited to collaborate with the Carbon Call to advance the interoperability and reliability of carbon accounting systems in the service of climate action.”David Rolnick, Co-Founder and Chair, Climate Change AI • Assistant Professor and Canada CIFAR AI Chair, McGill University
Corporate Leaders Group Europe
“As action on climate change scales up and becomes mainstream we’re seeing a growing trust gap, as new promises are made without the tools and systems to track delivery. The Carbon Call is a much needed rallying point for efforts to improve the accountability, transparency and readability of data on carbon emissions across the economy – an indispensable tool in closing that trust gap. Better collaboration for more transparent, more clear and more useful data will help the world keep track of climate pledges and give insights into how to improve and accelerate delivery of the Paris Agreement. CLG Europe is proud to support the Carbon Call and join efforts to enable the development of more reliable global carbon data and consequently faster climate action.”Eliot Whittington, Director, Corporate Leaders Groups Europe
“As businesses realize their role in tackling climate change, pledges and promises must be evidenced by progress and performance. A global, reliable, and interoperable system for improved GHG accounting is critical for our efforts to accelerate action and track progress at scale. EY is excited to be joining this collaboration across a broad range of stakeholders that will help create value for all.”Steve Varley, EY Global Vice Chair, Sustainability
Global Carbon Project
“As scientists, we track increasing concentrations of methane and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere that are warming the earth. But because of incomplete and inconsistent emissions reporting and a scarcity of monitoring stations, it is difficult for us to track where emissions originate and whether they are being cut sufficiently in a given country or region. We are pleased to be part of the Carbon Call which cuts across science, civil society, and the private sector to develop more comprehensive and integrated emissions reporting.”Rob Jackson, Chair of Global Carbon Project, Earth Scientist at Stanford University • Senior Fellow of the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment and the Precourt Institute for Energy
Global Council for Science and Environment
“Collaborations, partnerships and accountability between scientists and decision makers are vital to advance the use of science to address environmental challenges. The Carbon Call seeks to collaborate and facilitate various industries and organizations from local, national and global levels to develop a reliable global carbon accounting system. The Global Council for Science and the Environment is pleased to support the Carbon Call initiative to strengthen an interoperable global system of GHG accounting for the planet.”Michelle Wyman, Executive Director, Global Council for Science and the Environment
International Science Council
“The world needs to limit warming to no more than 1.5 degrees. Staying within this goal requires accelerating decarbonization through strategies that incentivize inclusive green growth. Many of these strategies rely on carbon accounting, which is still in its infancy. The Carbon Call’s focus on interoperability and transparency are critical to building a reliable carbon accounting system. Science has a key role to play. Science is needed not only to expand availability to reliable emissions and removal data, but also to design strategies that ensure trusted governance.”Leena Srivastava, International Science Council representative • Deputy Director General for Science at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
“Progress on climate action demands all of us working together to achieve positive change on a vast scale. That’s why KPMG is excited to be a founding signatory of the Carbon Call. Together, we can help build a more sustainable future for all”Bill Thomas, Global Chairman and CEO, KPMG
“Open source and interoperable data and technologies is critical to accelerating decarbonization of our economies. LF Energy provides a neutral, cooperative community that is building those shared investments that will help the world to meet the urgency of climate change. This is why we are excited to be part of the Carbon Call’s mandate to enable interoperability within the carbon accounting infrastructure.”Shuli Goodman, Executive Director, L. F. Energy
“At Linux Foundation we help grow open technologies ecosystems to transform industries. A key part of our work is enabling collaboration for building protocols interoperability. We are excited to be part of the Carbon Call to support and expand collaboration in building interoperability in the carbon accounting infrastructure to help accelerate climate action.”Jim Zemlin, Executive Director, the Linux Foundation
“With so many organizations now committing to net zero, one key piece is still missing: a transparent and interoperable system to track, report and compare GHG emissions and removals. Carbon Call is a collaboration to enable reliability among the multiple, different GHG accounting ledgers – from the corporate to the national to the planetary. We encourage all organizations committed to net zero to join us.”Lucas Joppa, Chief Environmental Officer, Microsoft
Mila, the Quebec artificial intelligence institute
“A key challenge to addressing the climate crisis globally is effectively accounting for carbon so a price can be put on it. Machine learning has the potential to offer a solution, but this requires that data from multiple sources be interoperable so they can be aggregated and used in analysis. Mila is pleased to be part of the Carbon Call collaboration to build a roadmap to ensure interoperability of carbon data and improve carbon accounting.”Yoshua Bengio, Founder and Scientific Director, MILA
“Climate change requires urgent, collective, and coordinated action, including protecting forests and managing land use better. But accounting data for emissions and carbon removal by forests and other sectors remains siloed, making it difficult for countries and companies to plan and take action. By catalyzing a more robust, interoperable global accounting system, the Carbon Call will enhance carbon accountability broadly. Having forest data integrated into a reliable global accounting system will give local communities, companies, and countries stronger evidence of the value of preserving forests.”Bruce Lowry, Senior Advisor, Skoll Foundation
Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment
“Natural climate solutions can be important contributors to solving the climate crisis, at the same time they provide valuable co-benefits for communities, economies, and ecosystems. Getting the accounting right is a critical foundation for building Natural Climate Solutions into a comprehensive strategy for decarbonization. Stanford’s Woods Institute is pleased to be collaborating on the Carbon Call to support efforts that enable more reliable, transparent, and integrated approaches to accounting for nature-based carbon dioxide emissions and removals.”Christopher Field, Perry L. McCarty Director, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment
United Nations Environment Programme (collaborating organization)
“With the scaled-up engagement the private sector we saw at COP 26 and the large number of new commitments and pledges, it is crucial that we have a more transparent reporting system, one that builds confidence in the reported reductions of financial institutions, industries, and cities. The Carbon Call will build on existing reporting initiatives in creating a coherent and transparent common reporting format, once that ensures comparability of reporting.”Sheila Aggarwal-Khan, Director, United Nations Environment Programme Economy Division
“The science is clear: the pathway to 1.5°C is rapidly narrowing. To meet our climate goals and save our planet for future generations, we need to slash emissions significantly – and immediately. The Carbon Call is a welcome step toward ensuring greater accountability and credibility for climate commitments made across sectors.”Elizabeth Cousens, President and CEO of the UN Foundation
“In the run up to COP26, we have seen an encouraging increase in commitments from countries on emissions reductions, adding up to an estimated two-thirds of the global economy. We are also seeing a concomitant increase in corporate commitments with more than 2000 companies who have set science-based targets. While these are very positive developments, it is absolutely critical that carbon accounting used to calculate GHG emissions is transparent and based on science-based methods. We are happy to support The Carbon Call’s objectives of building a reliable system of GHG accounting with a focus on some of the less understood areas like land use change and carbon removals.”Narayan P. S., VP and Global Head of Sustainability and Social Initiatives, Wipro Ltd.