Climate neutral business operations
It is the vision of MATSEN CHEMIE AG to offer its customers all products and services carbon-neutral by 2030 at the latest. In our third financial year, we came a step closer to this target: With the publication of our carbon footprint for 2019, we offset all carbon emissions listed therein by purchasing i.e. withdrawing carbon credits.
At the moment, the accounting of our greenhouse gas emissions is limited to direct CO₂ emissions, i.e. the own generation and the purchase of energy (Scope 1 and 2 according to the Greenhouse Gas Protocol), as well as the following upstream and downstream stages of our value chain (Scope 3): already today all business trips, our employees' commuting, the office equipment, the transport of goods and any materials used when repacking products are included. For us it is an important first step that our business operations can now be seen as climate neutral since 2019.
You can find the entire scope of our greenhouse gas balance including all sources and emission factors used here>.
Our target: climate neutral products
Even if a large number of our current products are essentially climate-friendly due to their non-fossil, vegetable origin, the cultivation of the plants as well as the production process still generate significant amounts of greenhouse gases. Likewise, we cannot substitute some products of fossil origin at the present time, both for technical reasons of our customers and for our own economic interests.
Therefore, supported by an external consulting company, we started to calculate the production-related CO₂ emissions (product carbon footprint) for three of our products - comprehensively and transparently. Based on these data, we want to reduce our product-related CO₂ emissions as much as possible. For the remaining, unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions, we will develop appropriate compensation solutions, analogous to our climate-neutral business operations.
Concept of climate neutrality
Companies, services or products are considered to be climate-neutral if reductions of an equivalent amount of greenhouse gas emissions are guaranteed elsewhere. This compensation is achieved by investing in a certified climate protection project. Since greenhouse gases are evenly distributed in the atmosphere, it does not matter where carbon emissions are reduced. In this way, emissions that are caused i.e. in Europe, can be offset by authorized climate protection projects somewhere else in the world. Further information on the subject of voluntary carbon offsetting can be found here >.
In addition to a transparent and proven reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, the climate protection projects, we choose for offsetting our emissions, need to contribute to social, ecological and economic development in the project region as well.
In order to ensure these criteria, we only choose projects that are both CDM and Gold Standard certified. Today, this combination offers the most strict existing standard for climate protection projects.
The standard of the United Nations ensures that the reduction, avoidance or storage of greenhouse gas emissions through a project actually represents additional savings. This means that the project can only be carried out with the earnings from the carbon credits. Projects that are economically reasonable even without these revenues and would have been realized anyway, are not eligible for carbon offsetting schemes.
To calculate greenhouse gas reductions, CDM projects may only use methodologies being verified independently and externally. In addition, all CDM projects must be validated by an independent and UN-accredited auditor before. Afterwards, the emission reductions are verified periodically, based on the previously established monitoring - also done by independent auditors. Only then the carbon credits (Certified Emission Reduction, CER) can be issued in the confirmed amount.
The Gold Standard was developed in 2003 by WWF together with other environmental associations. In addition to the mandatory emission reduction, Gold Standard projects also identify social and environmental aspects. This is to ensure that climate protection projects go beyond the reduction of greenhouse gases, also contributing to sustainable development in the respective project region (e.g. improvement of infrastructures, creation of jobs, reduction of health risks, etc.).
Offsetting with CDM Gold Standard projects in India
We fully offset our 2019 carbon footprint, 855.16 tons of CO2 equivalent, with two CDM Gold Standard projects in India.
Why India? Our products HCO (hydrogenated castor oil) and 12-HSA (12-hydroxystearic acid) are manufactured there and they are based, just like our sebacic acid, on castor oil. More than three quarters of the world’s supply of castor seed is produced in the northern Indian state of Gujarat. In addition to a photovoltaic project in Gujarat, we therefore primarily offset our carbon footprint with the project "Solar Water Heater Program in India".
Solar Water Heater Program in India
Nuetech Solar manufactures and installs solar thermal systems for hot water, so-called solar water heaters. The users of these systems are private households, small and medium-sized companies, as well as universities, schools or authorities. The urban population of India mostly uses electrically operated flow heaters to generate hot water, which accounts for between 20% and 30% of their electricity consumption. Electricity generation in India is still largely based on fossil fuels, in particular coal. In India, solar hot water heating can save an average of almost 2.5 tons of carbon dioxide per household and system every year.
You can find more about the project here >