Dozens of universities team up to pilot supply chain decarbonisation platform on road to net-zero

Pictured: Nottingham Trent University's Newton Building. Image: Immanuel Giel, CC-BY-SA-4.0-DEED

The tool, launched by Nottingham Trent University, enables organisations to access and track their supply chain emissions data at a supplier-specific level.

It also provides insights on which activities could be “proactively targeted” by client universities to deliver the deepest decarbonisation across their supply chains.

On the supplier side, the digital tool, co-developed by NETpositive Futures, encourages adopting decarbonisation workstreams. Suppliers are additionally provided with the information they need to undertake these projects. This information is based on carbon footprint calculations and a bespoke carbon reduction plan, both provided free of charge.

Suppliers which already know their carbon footprint and are acting ahead of their peers can share their learnings via the tool.

Six universities have trialled the tool already. Going forward, more than 30 will incorporate it into their supply chain management processes for a year. Further universities will be able to join after this 12-month “action research project” concludes.

Supporting universities span across England with locations in Bath, Birmingham, London, Liverpool, Yorkshire and many more cities and counties.

Nottingham Trent University’s head of sustainability Laura Mayhew-Manchon said the tool will provide crucial support on the university’s own journey to net-zero by 2040, and hopes this success can be replicated and multiplied across UK higher education.

Mayhew-Manchon said: “Supply chain emissions are the largest single source of emissions within our own footprint – five times greater than our emissions from energy use, which is common in many organisations. Our Net-Zero Carbon Supplier Tool goes some way to help us and the sector to reduce our Scope 3 emissions in a targeted and informed way

“The tool has two main benefits to the universities who use it – a more robust understanding of supply chain emissions which includes being able to see the positive impacts of sustainability interventions as they happen; and providing a conduit to engage and support suppliers from across the supply chain on their own sustainability journeys.”

Related report with free download: Scope 3 Spotlight – how to progress towards a net-zero value chain

Related news: Find all of edie’s content on Scope 3 (indirect) emissions here

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