Growing consumer demand for environmentally responsible companies that offer new carbon-neutral products and services creates competitive positioning and market value for “green” organizations. In the environmental business, we call this Sustainability.
In addition to complying with regulations and mitigating economic risks, many organizations are concerned about environmental stewardship and corporate responsibility. Our clients provide important services to society; we are pleased to assist them while also helping to minimize adverse environmental and economic impacts.
In this blog, we’d like to introduce you to Erin Quinn. Mr. Quinn has two decades of experience in environmental consulting, specializing in air quality, environmental assessments, and greenhouse gas (GHG) consulting, reporting, and verification. He has participated in over 550 GHG verification projects throughout the United States.
As a specialist in air permitting and reporting, we asked him to step us through the verification process to provide us with time and cost-saving tips while making the verification process smoother.
Check your firm’s qualifications. Seek a firm with a successful record of GHG emissions inventories, estimating GHG reductions, and a thorough knowledge of navigating the Cap and Trade Program. If you are experiencing a gap between your plan and your actual results, they could help identify how to close the gaps depending on their certifications and background.
Go local. For example, on the west coast, look for experience with CARB and ODEQ projects from various industries such as natural gas, coal, biogas and biomass, solar electricity generation, food processing, oil and gas production, electricity and transportation fuels transactions, and paper mills.
Preparation and understanding of a reporter’s GHG emission sources, CARB designation of the facility, or EPE as described in §95101 of the regulations, and any issues the reporting entity may have had while developing its GHG emissions report will facilitate report completion. This takes experience in combination with industry and specific agency requirements.
Investigate that your third-party verification is transparent. Third-Party Verification of GHG emission inventories and reduction credits under state agencies requires an efficient, transparent, and direct methodology for verifying GHG emissions reports.
Steps in the GHG Verification Process
SCS submits a conflict of interest (COI) and notice of verification services (NOVS) to CARB for their approval as soon as an agreement for verification services has been reached. A simple thing, but one that allows us to begin verification service as soon as the reporting entity submits its verification report to the agency, thus streamlining the process.
Next, we set up a kickoff meeting with the reporting entity and a consultant if you’re using one. At the meeting, we discuss the data that will or may, be required for a transparent verification process and documentation. The meeting helps clients understand all the data used in calculating and reporting their emissions, making the data review process seamless. Immediately following, we provide a formal initial data request.
Now we get to work. We begin by reviewing the provided data to develop a verification plan, a sampling plan, and an issues log. We share this with our client and provide any further explanation within the regulatory framework. During this phase, we often communicate with our client as a part of our quality management methodology.
After reviewing and addressing any issues, SCS completes the verification report and has a final meeting with our client within days of receipt so that SCS can submit it to the agency. The end result is a cost-effective, timely, and defendable verification that meets client and agency expectations and all requirements.
GHG Services at SCS Engineers
Our diligence has helped SCS develop excellent working relations with clients, various regulatory agencies, and voluntary registry. Our long experience enables us to understand your needs and how a regulatory agency or registry will interpret an unusual situation.
The firm has delivered verifications for over a decade and has 52 years of environmental compliance expertise for municipalities and industries. Our GHG verification team has completed hundreds of validation and verification projects, from mandatory GHG reporting in California and Oregon; LCFS validation and verification and offset verifications throughout the U.S.