The low-carbon diet is a growing trend in the sports and entertainment industries, where Fox TV’s 24 and pro basketball’s Los Angeles Clippers are using the Greenhouse Gas Protocol to cut their climate calories.
“Our goals are to fully understand our carbon and energy impact, to reduce that impact significantly, and inspire our employees to take action on this issue in their business and personal lives,” said Rachel Webber from News Corporation, the parent company of Twentieth Century Fox Television, which produces 24. “We have just begun this effort, and we hope it encourages others in the industry to do the same.”
“The GHG Protocol is considered the standard international accounting tool for government and business leaders to measure and manage corporate greenhouse gas emissions,” said Pankaj Bhatia, director of the GHG Protocol at the World Resources Institute (WRI). The GHG Protocol was established in 1998 by WRI and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.
Bhatia added, “It’s thrilling to see the application of our GHG Protocol in the sports and entertainment sectors, and in television shows like 24.”
When the producers of 24, starring Kiefer Sutherland, started using the GHG Protocol to calculate emissions, they found the largest sources originated from vehicles, special effects, and onsite generators. By changing some of the production practices, such as switching to biodiesel and hybrid cars, emissions were reduced by 43 percent.
The show’s environmental commitment is part of News Corporation’s global energy initiative to address its impact on climate change and lower the energy use of its businesses.
The sports industry is also striving to reduce emissions. The Los Angeles Clippers have teamed up with BeGreen, whose carbon offset methodologies are based on the GHG Protocol. To raise awareness of Earth Day 2009, the Clippers used a portion of their ticket sales from the game that day to reduce emissions from fan travel to and from the game and electricity usage at the Staples Center.
Also planning to use the GHG Protocol is Vancouver’s Olympic organizing committee. They hope to offset up to 300,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from the games – equal to the annual emissions from 50,000 European homes.
Since the publication of the first edition of The Greenhouse Gas Protocol: A Corporate Accounting and Standard in 2001, more than 1,000 businesses and organizations worldwide are using the GHG Protocol, including some of the world’s largest companies. The 2007 Corporate Climate Communications Report of the Fortune 500 companies by CoporateRegister.com reported that 63 percent of those companies use the GHG Protocol.
Other companies from various industries using the GHG Protocol include Target, Ikea, Unilever, Gap, Shell, Caterpillar, Marriott, Starbucks, General Electric, BP, IBM, VW, Bank of America, Timberland, Sony, Nike, 3M, Ford, Alcoa, Frito Lay, Staples, Xerox, Astra Zeneca and Wal-Mart.