After reducing our footprint for four years straight, we increased our emissions by one ton from 2012 to 2013. As in years past, after calculating our footprint, we purchased offsets for the equivalent of 168 metric tons of carbon dioxide. In 2013, we purchased our offsets through Shift Equity, a North Carolina based company that enables sales opportunities for produces and end-users of environmental commodities through its Carbon Advantage Program. This year, we bought offsets registered through the Climate Action Reserve, with the credits coming from a Gaston County, NC landfill gas capture project.
As with the last four years, we calculated Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions. This means we calculated carbon dioxide emissions associated with our office energy consumption, air and ground transportation, and overnight stays related to work. Our emissions have had a downward trend since we started tracking our CO2 emissions in 2009, as shown in the table below.
This is the third year that we have calculated our emissions in house. The major benefit of calculating our own footprint is that we know what all of our assumptions are, and can more easily understand why our emissions go up or down each year. The chart below shows our emissions from 2011-2013. We reduced our building and ground transportation emissions each year from 2011 to 2013, but increased our air transportation emissions.
Our building energy consumption dropped in 2012 because of our solar PV array in our Knoxville office – we produced negative emissions in 2012 in Knoxville due to our Green Power Switch purchases from TVA and our electricity production from our solar panels! We anticipate our 2014 building energy consumption will drop again as we installed solar in our Asheville office this year.