About CSRD and why SMEs need to measure their carbon emissions
“Can you provide a report of the carbon emissions generated by this shipment?” is a question you may not have been asked yet – but one that you can likely expect in the near future. The reason: the EU’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD).
As a result of the CSRD legislation, listed companies plus approximately 50,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Europe Union (EU) are required to report annually on their sustainability-related activities. This reporting covers not only the company’s own activities, but also the so-called Scope 3 emissions from the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. These are the carbon emissions generated by the company’s suppliers and customers. This can have consequences for SMEs even if they do not fall under the current CSRD legislation themselves, because they may be required to provide the information to their customers and suppliers.
What can you expect?
To comply with the CSRD, your customer or supplier may ask about the CO2 emissions per delivery or the emissions of your total organization, for example. They may also ask you how your company ensures that human rights are not violated throughout the supply chain, or for more background information on the extent to which your business operations are sustainable (e.g. does your organization have a sustainability policy?).
If you think that this won’t happen for a while, think again. Sustainability is increasingly becoming non-negotiable in the business-to-business environment. For instance, online retailer Zalando already requires all of its suppliers to provide their carbon emissions data; any suppliers who don’t share this data are excluded from the platform. Meanwhile, a growing number of governments are only working with suppliers who meet agreed sustainability criteria.
Even if you only supply to consumers, they too are becoming progressively more critical of companies that do not operate sustainably. Clearly, it is time for SMEs to start adapting to this new reality or face an uncertain future.
This blog is based on an article that was originally published by evofenedex in March 2023.
evofenedex is one of the largest business associations in the Netherlands. It provides extensive information and offers various consulting services to help members with sustainability-related issues. To gain insights into how you can start to measure, report on and reduce your CO2 emissions, attend the Sustainable Transport Inspiration Event on 13 April 2023 in Zoetermeer, the Netherlands, where BigMile and Topsector Logistics will hold two inspirational sessions hat will help you on your way. Sessions are in Dutch.