The City of Sydney was the first government in Australia to be certified carbon neutral...we encourage others to take strong actions and realise the opportunities that will come from a low carbon and prosperous society ― City of Sydney
Who can be Climate Active?
Any business or organisation, regardless of size or sector, seeking to take positive climate action can be Climate Active certified.
Climate Active certification is available for:
- Organisations (the business operations of an organisation)
- Products (a product being created, used and disposed of)
- Services (the provision of a service)
- Events (the activities associated with running an event)
- Buildings * (the operations of a building)
- Precincts (the operations of a precinct)
For your entity to be certified you must meet the requirements of the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard. Broadly, this means that to achieve certification you must measure emissions, reduce these where possible, offset remaining emissions and then publicly report on your achievement.
Step-by-step certification process
- The first step in going carbon neutral is to apply to Climate Active. Once we have approved the application, a business can enter into a licence agreement with us.
- The next step is for a business to calculate their greenhouse gas emissions. This establishes the carbon account or carbon footprint. A significant benefit of this step in the process is that it provides a business with a better understanding of emissions sources and where reductions can be made.
- The third step involves reducing emissions where possible. This often includes changes to operations such as reducing electricity or purchasing it from renewable sources, reducing waste, improving fuel and transport efficiencies, limiting or avoiding travel, and using certified carbon neutral products and services.
- Any emissions that still remain can be eliminated or offset by purchasing carbon credits. A carbon credit is a reduction in emissions generated by a project, such as reforestation or renewable energy, in order to compensate for emissions made elsewhere. Businesses can buy these offsets to effectively cancel out their emissions. Once you have cancelled out your emissions you have reached a state called ‘carbon neutral’.
- The next step involves a business arranging to have their carbon neutral claim independently validated by an independent third party. This includes verifying the emissions data in the carbon account.
- Finally, once Climate Active has assessed all of the reporting documents that support an organisation’s carbon neutral claim, we provide certification. Once certified, an organisation’s public disclosure statement is published on our website to allow the public to see their carbon neutral claims are credible.
Climate Active certification incurs an annual licence fee. This is based on the size of an organisation’s carbon account and it pays for licence administration, certification trade mark compliance and support services for certified organisations.
Other costs associated with certification vary depending on the use of technical experts, the types of offsets used and auditing services. Technical advice may include developing a carbon account and having your carbon neutral claim and data independently validated. Offset costs will depend on how many are required and the types of offset units purchased. These costs are separate to the certification fee, are set by the market and vary across the industry.
For more information on how to be certified, read our Climate Active Guide.
Using the Climate Active trade mark
The Climate Active trade mark is available for use by businesses and organisations that have entered a licence agreement with the Climate Active team. The Climate Active certification trade mark makes it easier to identify and choose brands that are reducing their carbon footprint.
Businesses and organisations should undertake their own due diligence to ensure that any claims they make are consistent with the requirements of the Australian Consumer Law and the terms and conditions as set out in the Climate Active licence agreement.
Ready to apply?
Thanks for committing to taking action!
The process for certification varies slightly depending on what you want to certify. The following documents will help get you started.
- Upfront Carbon for Buildings (Product)*
Decide if you need a consultant to help you with your certification. Climate Active has a list of registered consultants who specialise in Climate Active certification.
Climate Active applications for organisation, product, service, precinct or event certification can be made via the Online User Portal.
A sample application form is provided to give you an idea of the information we require upon application. This is a sample only, applications are only accepted via the Portal. You can view the sample application questions at our Tools and Resources section.
*Upfront Carbon for Buildings (Product) certification is available through Climate Active or the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA). If you are seeking certification via Climate Active, download an application form and submit the completed form to email@example.com.