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April 1, 2021updated 11 May 2021 7:27pm

Irish food companies sign up to low-carbon pledge

By Andy Coyne

A number of Ireland-based food groups have signed up to a new low carbon pledge backed by more than 60 of the country’s largest businesses.

ABP Food Group, fellow meat processor Dawn Meats and dairy business Ornua are among those committing to science-based carbon emission reduction targets as part of Business in the Community Ireland (BITCI)’s new Low Carbon Pledge.

The pledge calls on businesses to set the carbon emission reduction targets to be no later than 2024.

They are charged with recording and then reducing their entire carbon footprint, both direct (Scope 1 & 2) and indirect (Scope 3) emissions.

Under the internationally-recognised Greenhouse Gas Protocol, an organisation’s emissions are split into three ‘scopes’. Scope 1 covers direct emissions from owned or controlled sources. A second, Scope 2, covers indirect emissions from the generation of the electricity, steam, heating and cooling bought and consumed by a reporting organisation. Scope 3 includes all other indirect emissions that occur in a company’s value chain.

The companies will have to report the results in annual reports or on their websites and also through an annual BITCI low carbon report. Signatory companies are asked to commit to regularly reviewing their carbon reduction targets to align to the latest climate science.

Tomás Sercovich, BITCI’s CEO, said: “Investors, regulators, consumers, suppliers and employees expect business to lead the net zero vision we all aspire. Transparency and accountability are fundamental for the change to happen. The Low Carbon Pledge is a clear demonstration of businesses driving towards decarbonisation, creating the business models, innovation and jobs for a low carbon future.”

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