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Carbon emissions of waste streams of Enexis


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Ecofys calculates the carbon emissions of waste streams of the Dutch grid operator Enexis

After finalising the thorough annual validation of Enexis’ carbon footprint, Ecofys was asked to perform an in-depth analysis of the scope 3 carbon emission of their waste streams. As a grid operator, installing, maintaining and removing electricity and natural gas grids is part of Enexis’ day-to-day business. Construction and maintenance of energy grids absorbs many raw materials and results in a diverse mix of waste streams. These are then processed by a third party. Enexis wants to comprehend the carbon emissions of their waste processing and recycling by gaining an insight into the magnitude and origin of these emissions along the supply chain. Furthermore it is important to know how many CO2-emisions have been avoided by recycling. This insight will enable Enexis to identify waste processing procedures with a lower environmental impact.

As these types of (scope 3) calculations are complex and still relatively new for organisations, Enexis and Ecofys have followed a two staged approach in close contact with the current waste processor. Within the first phase Ecofys and Enexis have analysed the different waste streams, materials and their specific process steps (e.g. disposal, transport, processing and recycling). Based on this analysis Ecofys developed a calculation method in line with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol for scope 3 emissions and ISO14067. Ecofys has also developed this method in close contact with the makers of the GHG Protocol. In phase two Ecofys set up the actual calculation tool.

The method and calculation are used to determine and annually report the carbon footprint, but also to help Enexis determine where in their waste chain the biggest (climate) profits can be made. This way, Enexis not only reached a greenhouse gas reduction in 2012, but also converted their total costs for waste management to net revenues from the valuable materials within this waste. The total savings achieved amount to nearly a million Euros per year.  With good supply chain management, environmental benefits and cost savings can go hand in hand.

Please find additional information in our press release.


Caspar Noach
Sustainable Products
Edgar van de Brug
Sustainable Products