As our latest financial year comes to a close, it’s time to review the impact we’ve made over the last 12 months.
Through these Impact Reports, we wanted to be as transparent as possible, cramming as much detail as we can, hopefully encouraging and inspiring others in the industry to take real action. This report provides a summary of our carbon emissions calculations from 1st April 2022 to 31st March 2023 (known as “2022”), and our total impact since June 2020 including what we’ve done to minimise this.
2022 saw devastating floods in Pakistan impacting an estimated 33 million people, record-breaking heatwaves in China, wildfires causing destruction across Europe, and temperatures in the UK reaching more than 40 degrees for the first time ever with global temperatures for 2015-2022 being the eight warmest years on record.
While there is a lot to be worried about when it comes to climate change, we must not lose hope. The media has an important role to play in combatting ‘climate doom’, and we’ve listed below just some of the many positive stories from the last 12 months to show that there is hope.
- Wind and solar power produced more of the EU’s electricity than fossil gas for the first time (Forbes)
- Ozone layer on track to recover within decades (UN)
- Carbon-free sources produced more energy than coal in the US for the first time (EuroNews)
- EU Parliament passes historic law to stop deforestation (ClientEarth)
One of the key measures for our impact is our carbon footprint and at SRL Publishing we’re focusing on carbon dioxide emissions (CO2). CO2 is released into the atmosphere in a number of ways with human activity causing a huge increase in the world’s emissions through the burning of fossil fuels.
As a first step to help reduce CO2, businesses need to measure their emissions, and once we know our impact we can then take steps to reduce these and keep global warming below the 1.5-degree target.
When we calculate our CO2 , we count our scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions which includes the manufacture of our products, employee travel, and even our internet and data usage.
As technology advances and creates more accurate calculations, our reporting improves to reflect the latest data. This is why we add 15% to our final figures to give a bit of headroom in terms of accurate reporting. Future reports may see some fluctuations to our figures as new technology and information becomes available, hence the addition of 15% to cover this.
Emissions data is broken down into 3 different scopes. Scope 1 is emissions from activities owned or controlled by a company that directly release emissions into the atmosphere, for example the gas used to heat a building.
Scope 2 covers emissions associated with the purchase of electricity, heating, or cooling. While Scope 3 emissions are those which a company has no direct control over, but can be influenced through a supply chain and usually represents the majority of emissions.
Our CO2 emissions
Our CO2 emissions calculations include mileage, train travel, website bandwidth (hosting and email) and website visitors, waste, manufacturing, paper, flights and hotel accommodation. Our electricity has been 100% renewable so this data has not been included. The way we operate due to our environmental policy means we do not overprint our books just for a bigger profit margin. We basically print what we sell to minimise warehousing costs and unnecessary transport back and forth between warehouses and distribution centres, which leads to minimal returns and wastage.
Our emissions for our 2022 year total 14.87T, with the added 15% making it 17.11T. In the same timeframe, we had funded and supported projects totalling a reduction of 31.6T. The projects supported throughout the 12-month period are listed below.
- Wind power generation in Honduras
- Wind power generation in Mexico
- Preventing deforestation in the Democratic Republic of Congo
- Renewable solar energy in Egypt
- Protecting biodiversity reverses in Peru
- Wind power generation in Thailand
- Capturing methane to turn into energy in India
- Generating energy from landfill gas in Brazil
- Peatland restoration in Indonesia
- Distributing cleaner cookstoves in Kenya
- Capturing waste biogas for energy in Türkiye
- Solar electricity in Indonesia
- Forest protection in Columbia
The carbon offset projects we fund to offset our footprint differ each month between top-quality projects that avoid Greenhouse Gases from entering the atmosphere (such as renewable energy projects which displace existing fossil fuel energy). Our partner only funds projects which meet the highest verification standards, such as Gold Standard or Verified Carbon Standard.
Since we’ve been climate positive in June 2020, we’ve been responsible for 70T of CO2 against an offset of 142T.
UN Sustainable Development Goals
The projects we support through our carbon offsetting also support the United Nations SDGs. Every single project supported contributes to SDG number 13 – Climate Action, but we also look at which other SDGs our projects contribute toward.
On average each project we supported and funded between April 2022 and March 2023, contributed to an average of 5 Sustainable Development Goals.
Aside from SDG goal 13 (Climate Action), the most common SDG among our projects this year was SDG 8 (Decent work and economic growth), followed by SDG 7 ( Affordable clean energy).
Throughout the year, not only do we calculate our CO2 emissions and track which projects we fund, we also calculate the number of trees used for our products and use this number to plant and replace. Our tree planting partners plants trees with Eden Reforestation Projects, which aims to reduce extreme poverty and restore healthy forests by employing local people.
In 2022, we had ‘used’ 82.08 trees for our products and have funded the planting of 1,311 in a number of countries including Madagascar, Ethiopia, Bolivia, and Uganda.
Since June 2020 up until March 2023, we’ve planted a total of 5,886 trees, in 15 different countries, having used 350 trees for our products.
Every single company, big or small, has their part to play in ensuring the world reaches net zero. The climate emergency is for everyone, everywhere. It’s become clear that, to tackle the crisis head-on, we need to take immediate and decisive action.
We know this alone isn’t enough, and there is always room for improvement. Our core value is to make every aspect of our business more sustainable, be transparent about our emissions, and to hopefully inspire others to do the same. We’re a small business, so as we continue to grow, so does our impact, meaning we regularly monitor our emissions data and increase our funding if required.
Having been a member of the Publisher’s Association Sustainability Taskforce since 2021, we’ve been working collectively to develop industry standard tools for the continuing evolution of our industry towards a low carbon future. The Carbon Calculator was launched by the Publisher’s Association in September 2022 and, while using the calculator, found the figures matched our own, with a less than 1% discrepancy. We’re also members of the UN SDG Publisher Compact, a signatory of Publishing Declares, and became a member of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
- Shortlisted – 2023 UK Green Business Awards – Leader of the Year
- Shortlisted – 2022 Scale Up Awards – International Business of the Year
- Winner – 2022 Global Excellence Award – Excellence in Green Publishing
- Shortlisted – 2022 BusinessGreen Leader Awards – Small Business of the Year
- Winner– 2022 Business Champion Awards – Sustainable Business of the Year