By achieving carbon neutrality in a transparent, genuine, and certified process, an entity internalises the true costs of its GHG emissions instead of shifting it to society. In this way, the entity takes full responsibility for its climate impact, while at the same time increasing its competitiveness by anticipating a future where emissions will be highly regulated.
Reducing emissions leads to lower costs, higher efficiency, and less waste Companies with a reduced carbon footprint consume less energy, fossil fuels, water, paper, packaging and produce less waste. This leads to lower costs and lower dependency on fuels/resources, creating room for further sustainable investments (e.g. energy efficiency, renewable energy, R & D, eco-design, etc.). A recent report by WWF and CDP once again showed that reducing emissions and reducing costs can go hand in hand. As such, the current high wastage of energy and resources should be seen as a unique opportunity to reap savings instead of a burden.
source: WWF (2013). The 3% solution. Available on http://worldwildlife.org/projects/the-3-solution
Offsetting increases corporate social responsibility and sustainable development Even with rigorous emission reduction measures, entities will still have a certain carbon footprint from unavoidable processes/materials/… By offsetting those remaining impacts, an entity takes full responsibility for those emissions as well, and ensures that they are reduced elsewhere. Organised in cooperation with local NGOs, these offsetting projects mostly entail additional benefits for the local communities. The climate projects often support charitable services, respect local cultures, enhance the role of women in society, and stimulate sustainable development and biodiversity development or protection. From a global perspective, investments in sustainable energy in developing countries might allow these countries to skip a western-like fossil fuel intensive economy and transition straight towards a low carbon economy.
Carbon neutral companies/organisations are future "ready" and one step ahead of their competitors. By anticipating tight regulation on carbon emissions, the entity will be ahead of the game, differentiating itself from competitors, motivating staff, and attracting new customers. A genuine commitment to carbon neutrality creates an ecological image without greenwashing, which is increasing important for modern consumers. The entity will set the example, and, through its customers, supply chain, etc., contribute to a global awareness in countering climate change.