Reporting The Social And Environmental Impacts Of Carbon Offsets

Who you are, how you operate, and how you’re perceived: they’re unique components of your brand and vital to your continued success.

How can your carbon offset reporting help tell your story and strengthen your reputation with your stakeholders?

Why carbon reporting isn’t all about the emissions?

Clearly communicating the impact of your work is important. 

Carbon emissions reporting is now widespread – and often a requirement – in the corporate world, with carbon offsets playing an increasingly important role.

And although you may have an impressive track record of emissions reduction and offsetting, failure to report your social and environmental impacts means missing a valuable opportunity to communicate your values.

When you’re investing in carbon offsets, you need a program provider that offers projects that align with your goals and values, and can supply the data you need to effectively report the impacts.

What are the key elements of a great social impact report?

Emissions reporting uses inherently negative language: Reducing energy use, cutting emissions, preventing climate change. Non-emission targets are an opportunity to engage your stakeholders by telling positive stories about your work.

An example of this can be seen in the Shenandoah School Wind Project. By numbers alone the project aims to avoid 13,000 metric tons of carbon emissions over the first ten years. However, the positive addition to the community is vocational education in wind technology for high school students.

To write a great narrative about your carbon offsets, you should include information about:

  • The participants – who was involved in the project?
  • What resources were used?
  • What were the project goals?
  • What actually happened – were the targets met?
  • What were the outcomes – who benefited and how?

Stories about the lives of people and communities helped by carbon offset projects can be very compelling, but must also include reliable data alongside the narrative.

Not all offset projects hit their targets immediately, so honest and transparent reporting is important.

As well as successes, sub-optimal outcomes and unmet goals should be included, alongside lessons learned and future opportunities.

If your offset provider has helped you invest in projects that resonate with your stakeholders, it’s easier to keep your impact report relevant to your audience.

Most corporate communications are read by a wide range of people, so make sure that:

  • You know which key stakeholder groups you are aiming to engage
  • The key information they need is easy to find
  • The information you provide will be useful to them

If your social impact report tells positive stories in an honest, transparent and relevant way, you will maximize its effectiveness with all stakeholder groups.

What role can your offset provider play in social impact reporting?

Along with carbon reductions, NativeEnergy’s HelpBuild projects deliver measurable environmental, social and economic benefits. These benefits include safe water, clean air, ecosystem restoration, soil health, smallholder farmer development, community education opportunities and wildlife and habitat protection.

These small community-based projects would not have happened without carbon offset investment from organizations like yours, so each one is a positive story waiting to be told.

The rigorous three-stage validation and verification process employed by NativeEnergy guarantees that your reports are based on accurate, honest and transparent data.

By working with NativeEnergy to develop custom projects specific to your organization’s unique sustainability requirements, your social impact reports will remain highly relevant to your customers, staff, suppliers and investors, building brand value from your investment.

Let us help you share your success story. Visit our Help BuildCarbon Offsets page or contact us for more information.