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The demand for tangible sustainability action is becoming more pressing as we inch closer to our 2030 and 2050 Net Zero targets.

However, that is still quite a way off, and many businesses are dragging their feet when it comes to taking action. Sure, some may have an ESG Policy or mention it on their website, however that term is starting to become synonymous with green washing due to poor implementation in many cases.

So, what can you do to make a difference right now?

In this weeks’ episode Mel explains the principle of Parkinson’s law, how ISO Standards can help to tackle climate change and how you can achieve Net Zero in just 90 days.

You’ll learn

  • What Parkinson’s Law is
  • How can ISO standards help tackle climate change
  • The 3 reasons why businesses are behind on achieving net zero
  • How you can achieve Net Zero in just 90 days using the Net Zero Planner


In this episode, we talk about:

[00:25] Come visit the Carbonology stand at EMEX! – EMEX is a free exhibition to learn about carbon management, ESG and sustainability. It takes place at ExCeL London on 22nd – 23rd November 2023 – Carbonology will be at Stand G38. Come grab a free Net Zero Planner while you’re there! Register your place here.

[02:10] Episode Summary – Today we’ll be talking about why we need to act now rather than in a decade or two, how ISO Standards can play a critical role in tackling climate change and using the Net Zero Planner to help you set achievable objectives to work towards Net Zero in just 90 days.    

[02:55]  We need to act now rather than later! – Our 2030 and 2050 targets are very far away, which results in businesses not doing much to address them in the meantime.

They might have an ESG policy or they might have something referencing ESG on their website, but are they actually taking action right now to make that happen? In many cases, no. Which is where Parkinson’s Law comes into play.

[03:40] What is Parkinson’s Law? Parkinson’s Law is the idea that work expands to fill the time allotted for its completion. This may mean you take longer than necessary to complete a task or you procrastinate and complete the task right before the due date.

Parkinson’s Law is the old adage that work expands to fill the time allotted for its completion. The term was first coined by Cyril Northcote Parkinson in a humorous essay he wrote for “The Economist” in 1955.

Lets say you are given a task to complete a report in 3 weeks, chances are if you were given the task to do in 1 week – you’d make it happen.

Parkinson’s Law says that the perceived importance and difficulty of a task will grow in proportion to the amount of time given to finish it.

[05:30] Is it possible to achieve Net Zero in 2024?: Yes! Carbonology® been turning around projects to help businesses to build net carbon neutral in less than three months –  so why can’t you?

[06:05] The Net Zero Planner –  The Net Zero in 90 days planner gives you a pathway to follow to achieve Net Carbon Zero.

Each day focuses on a specific task, enabling you to make step by step progress to achieve your goals.

Your Net Zero Planner provides the foundations for not only achieving Net Zero but also achieving verification to Carbon standards along the way. Grab a copy here!

[08:25] What role do ISO Standards play in tackling climate change? Standards have a critical role in helping meet climate goals. Particularly when there is an influx of greenwashing across industries.

The international standards for carbon verification (ISO 14064) and carbon neutrality (PAS 2060, due to be ISO 14064 in 2024) support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and create a level playing field, providing transparency, reliability, accountability and without a doubt, credibility.

[10:00] So why are businesses struggling to achieve Net Zero? there are three reasons why businesses are behind on achieving Net Zero:-

  • Time and resources have not been dedicated.
  • Lack of focus and structure
  • Lack of knowledge on what to do

The Net Zero Planner will help to address these challenges.

[11:15] Carbonology is there to support you – Some of the tasks in the planner may be tricky – quantifying your emissions for example, this is always going to be challenging.

Carbonology is there to support you, either with consultancy or digital resources via the Carbonologyhub. If you need some extra assistance, simply contact them.

[11:55] How can the Net Zero Planner help you? –  First and foremost, Net zero is not going to happen, unless you prioritise your time.

This starts with designing your ideal week. Imagine how would you structure your week if you had 100% control. What does your ideal week look like?

Remember, What gets scheduled gets done.  Sticking to a plan takes discipline, but imagine if every business dedicated 2 hours a day for 3 months, we’d be achieving net zero well before 2050!

By setting aside 2 hours a day to complete a Net Zero task, you and your team will be well equipped to put your planning in place and achieve Net Zero accreditation! Of course, not every week will be aligned with your ideal week, but it’s a guide that you can refer back to.

 [13:00] Making progress with the Net Zero Planner –  It’s imperative you review progress on a weekly and monthly basis and at the end of the 9O days. This will help to drive momentum when you see what you’ve achieved and also provide a reality check if you need additional support or time.

The weekly, monthly and quarterly review provides an opportunity to look back at your progress and allows you time to reflect on what went well, and where you’ve been having challenges which may result in making decisions to address any shortfalls.

 This could include allowing more time for a specific task the following week, delegating responsibilities internally or outsourcing activities i.e. carbon quantification or verification.

It’s recommended that you schedule this review and reflection time in your calendar i.e. 1 hour on a Friday afternoon or at the end of the month. In addition to the structured planner pages, there are blank pages for expanding on your ideas and taking notes.

[15:25] Special Deal! –  The Net Zero Planner is available for Amazon at a reduced price of £7.99 until the 15th December 2023. The Standard price will be £14.99. If you’re at EMEX on the 22nd or 23rd November 2023, we have 100 free copies to give away!

Lastly, if you have an questions or would like to learn more about how Carbonology can help you, feel free to book a call in via David’s Calendly.

We’d love to hear your views and comments about the ISO Show, here’s how:

  • Share the ISO Show on Twitter or Linkedin
  • Leave an honest review on iTunes or Soundcloud. Your ratings and reviews really help and we read each one.

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Sustainability has become one of the main focal points for businesses to address in the last few years, and for good reason! We’re already seeing the devastating effects of simply doing nothing in the form of more extreme weather, occurring much more frequently in areas not equip to handle it.

To encourage action from businesses, we’re seeing more public and private sector contracts include a tendering requirement to show your commitment to sustainability. One such example is the need for a PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plan.

In this weeks’ episode David Algar, Principal Carbonologist at Carbonology, joins Mel to explain exactly what PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plans are, what the requirements mean in practice and the consequences if a business does not meet the requirements.

You’ll learn

  • What are PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plans?
  • What the requirements mean in practice
  • Benefits to a business
  • What if a business does not meet the requirements?


In this episode, we talk about:

[00:42] Episode Summary – We’re talking about PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plans because there is a government requirement to submit one. This episode will cover the what and why, in part 2 we’ll go into more detail about how to create a Carbon Reduction Plan.   

[02:10]  What is a PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plan? Procurement Policy Note 06/21 was introduced back in June 2021, hence the 06/21 part, and is a tendering requirement for companies looking to win contracts in the public sector that links to the Government’s Net Zero target.

[02:28] What is the UK government’s Net Zero target? The ‘net zero target’ refers to a government commitment to ensure the UK reduces its emissions by 100% from 1990 levels by 2050.  

[02:55] Who does PPN apply to?: Public sector, so any businesses that works with education, local authorities, housing, infrastructure, defence, transit, and of course, the NHS who have set a goal of Net Zero by 2040.

Officially this is for contracts that are valued at £5M or more, but in April 2024 the NHS will be requesting a Carbon Reduction Plan for all procurement.

Unofficially, this framework could be adopted by any business, so even if you don’t deal directly with the public sector, or are a subcontractor, your supply chain may soon be requesting a Carbon Reduction Plan!

[04:05] Why do you need a Carbon Reduction Plan? Although the Government’s targets and policies around Net Zero keep changing, the overall goal of PPN 06/21 is to encourage businesses to reach Net Zero before 2050, come up with a plan to do so, and implement emission reduction initiatives in the delivery of Government contracts.

[04:35] From a businesses perspective, what are the main benefits? There are 2 main benefits:

  • It’s essential for some tendering, with as much as a 10% weighting based on your carbon management and social values. Put simply, if you don’t produce one when needed, you may fail the tender requirements and probably won’t make the sale.
  • The second main benefit is that this isn’t just a piece of paper with a graph on it, it’s a great opportunity to investigate your business’ GHG emissions, and put a plan in place to reduce them. This also helps you show to stakeholders that you are actually committed to environmental protection and could identify some cost savings in your business after going through all the data.
  • It’s also a great addition to any existing ISO 14001 or ISO 50001 Management Systems!

[06:10] What are the key requirements of PPN 06/21? –    Firstly you’ll need to make a commitment to achieving net zero by 2050 at the latest. This includes annually calculating your emissions and updating the Carbon Reduction Plan.

Next you’ll need to report on a minimum set of GHG categories: 100% of your Scope 1 emissions, so direct emission from company vehicles, gas heating (so stuff you burn) and any fugitive emissions, which are leaks from HVAC systems for most businesses. 100% of your Scope 2 emissions which is electricity most of the time but can also refer to steam you import from an external source.

You’ll also need to report on 5 Scope 3 categories, these are your indirect emissions:

  • Waste generated in operations
  • Business travel in vehicles you don’t own, so staff cars, flights, trains, etc
  • Commuting, so staff traveling to and from work, being careful not to double count business travel not already claimed under expenses
  • And arguably the most complicated, upstream and downstream transportation, i.e. goods in, and goods out – physical transport of goods

[09:50] Are there any other categories covered by scope 3 that we should consider? –  Generally, when we produce a CRP for our clients, we’ll look at a few extra Scope 3 categories such as water, homeworking, or purchased goods, so carbon reduction planning can extend to other elements of the business. In all cases you’ll need to report in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, or tCO2e, as this accounts for the global warming potential of multiple GHGs.

[11:30] Are there any ISO standards that you can align the Carbon Reduction Plan to? Yes! At Carbonology, we use ISO 14064-1. This sets out a series requirements and guiding principles for the quantification and reporting of emissions. We wouldn’t necessarily have to go all the way to meeting every single requirement of the standard for your CRP but we always align with the key requirement of the standard when completing a CRP.

And if you’re lucky we’ll also cover your SECR figures!

[12:05] What is SECR? –  Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting. This is mandatory reporting for businesses that are defined as large, so 250+ staff, and 36M turnover or 18M on the balance sheet.

[18:20] Asset Management –  In 8.2 there is a consideration for Asset Management on your side. You should take care of any assets relating to the customer, where it’s stored and how it’s being looked after.

Standards such as ISO 27001 (Information Security) and ISO 55001 (Asset Management) already have some considerations for this.

[13:30] You’ve calculated your GHG results, what’s next?-  Once you’ve calculated emission from the required sources, you’ll then need to look at the carbon reduction side of your Carbon Reduction Plan.

To start with you’ll need to outline existing initiatives you have, for instance, a sustainable travel policy, EV charging on site or a hybrid working model. It’s really important that these are relevant to the delivery of the contract you are trying to secure.

Next, you’ll need to outline planned future initiatives, but bear in mind, these will need to be realistic and relevant, so no wild claims about buying an EV fleet or going zero waste next week!

Once you’ve done all this you can then start looking at carbon reduction forecasts and what the numbers might look like between now and 2050 (or you chosen date.

[15:10] Additional PPN 06/21 tips from David:  It will need to be signed off by a director, or equivalent, at your business to demonstrate leadership commitment. If the document isn’t signed off on you may fail on the tender.

You’ll need to publish it on your website, making it easy to access. Simple solution to this is just add a link at the bottom of your landing page.

And finally, you’ll need to make sure this is kept up to date each year. Reporting for emissions occurs on a 12 monthly basis. This can either be calendar year or your financial year, but ideally, you’ll want to publish the updated version as soon as you can after the year-end, certainly no longer than 6 months after.

[16:40] What does a Carbon Reduction Plan look like? – When the government announced this requirement, they also released a template document that businesses can complete. This is to simplify the process for businesses that are reporting on emission for the first time, but more importantly it standardises reporting. However, the template is a bit basic!

You’re not marked on presentation, but you can dress it up a little as long as you don’t deviate from the template too much. So feel free to put come company branding on it, make a cover page, change the font, etc.

You could also make a ‘full’ version of your CRP that includes further details on boundaries, methodologies and results, just make sure you only submit the template version to tenders.

[19:10] What happens if you don’t meet the requirements? – If you don’t meet the requirements without a valid reason, chances are you’ll fail the selection criteria. The selection criteria is a bit like the marking scheme associated with PPN. We can’t say for a fact that this means you’ll subsequently fail the tender, but it will certainly have a negative impact.

For further information, David has prepared a quick guide for creating your PPN 06/21 Carbon Reduction Plan. Feel free to download it below.

Lastly, if you have an questions or would like to learn more about how Carbonology can help you, feel free to book a call in via David’s Calendly.

We’d love to hear your views and comments about the ISO Show, here’s how:

  • Share the ISO Show on Twitter or Linkedin
  • Leave an honest review on iTunes or Soundcloud. Your ratings and reviews really help and we read each one.

Subscribe to keep up-to-date with our latest episode’s

Stitcher | Spotify | YouTube | iTunes | Soundcloud |

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