A carbon footprint calculator is a tool that enables businesses to measure, manage and reduce their carbon emissions. It can be purchased for a flat fee or as part of a subscription. Prices vary according to the features included. Depending on the company’s needs, the price of the support service provided by a specialist consultant must also be added.
Depending on the type, carbon footprint solutions provide a more or less accurate assessment of the quantity of CO2 and other greenhouse gases emitted by different company activities or processes.
This tool enables CSR managers to identify potential areas for improvement and guide organisations towards sustainable measures.
As a company, there are many factors to consider when determining the cost of a carbon footprint calculator.
What factors influence the cost of a carbon footprinting calculator?
The cost of carbon footprint platforms can vary depending on the complexity of the programme and the features you wish to include.
Some basic programmes are available free of charge, while more advanced softwares may require an investment of several hundred or even thousands of euros per year.
It’s important to research and compare different providers before making a purchasing decision. Comparators can provide an overview of the pricing models and packages that best meet your business needs.
Functions covered by the software
When you’re looking for carbon calculators, think about the features that are most important to you and your business.
- Does the software comply with carbon accounting standards such as the GHG Protocol and Bilan Carbone®?
- Can several of your company’s sites have independent carbon footprints?
- Is the interface intuitive and easy to use?
- Can it be integrated into an ERP system?
- Does it simplify data collection within the company?
- Is it possible to compare changes in the situation from year to year?
- Can the software be used to determine the amount of CO2 emitted in the production of a given type of product?
- Does it provide reporting for decision-makers, shareholders and the executive committee?
The methods used to calculate the carbon footprint can have an impact on the cost of the software or tool.
This is specifically the case for Scope 3, which concerns greenhouse gas emissions generated indirectly during the product life cycle (supply, mobility, logistics, sales, use, end of life, etc.).
Collecting, managing and updating data relating to this scope before the assessment can increase the cost of the calculator. This scope involves a considerable amount of research work with suppliers and partner companies.
However, it is essential to take into account all the data relating to your business if you want to reduce your impact on the environment and cut your costs in the long term.
To make sure you choose a solution that meets your needs, it’s important to take into account factors such as the size, activities, budget and objectives of your business.
The calculator must offer functions that are adapted to the company’s sector: agronomy, chemicals, services, and raw materials processing. For example, it is important to know whether the software provider has the relevant CO2 emission factors for your business.
Finally, the tool must be able to reflect the structural organisation of the company (multinational, multi-site, multi-product) to produce reports aligned with the structure of your business.
Choosing the right solution
Once you’ve decided which features are most important to you, consider price and availability.
While high-end carbon calculation tools may cost more initially, they can also help reduce your costs if they have a wide range of features and functionality.
SaaS carbon calculators
A SaaS (Software as a Service) carbon footprint platform is an online tool developed to measure the carbon footprint of a company or activity. Like a piece of software, it can be used to identify where improvements can be made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Its price may vary depending on the features offered. It is generally sold on a subscription basis. Generally speaking, these platforms cost between €1,000 and €10,000 a year. More complex or customised solutions can cost up to several million euros.
It is important to take into account the additional support services that accompany the purchase of the software, such as technical assistance, consulting or tutorials, which will help the CSR manager to implement the programme successfully.
Some software suppliers offer consulting services to help their customers. As every company has unique objectives, an external expert can be invaluable in helping you take the necessary steps to reduce your impact on the environment. The value of this support will be all the greater if the consultant is certified in carbon accounting and is an expert in your field.
Whatever your needs may be, investing in the right carbon management software will put your business on the road to sustainability. It’s more important than ever to think about how we can adapt and reduce our carbon footprint.
Reduce your company’s carbon footprint by booking a demo with our experts at D-Carbonize.