The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) has granted the first accreditations for assessing greenhouse gas emissions of goods and services. Four verification bodies have been awarded UKAS accreditation against the requirements of Publicly Available Specification 2050, the product carbon footprinting standard published by BSI, and sponsored by the Carbon Trust and Defra. PAS 2050 was developed in response to growing calls for a consistent method of assessing the life cycle green house gas (GHG) emissions of goods and services. The newly accredited bodies are Carbon Trust Footprinting Certification Company Limited (CTFCC), Complete Integrated Certification Services Ltd, Lloyds Register Quality Assurance Limited, and SGS United Kingdom Limited.
A pilot assessment programme, sponsored by the Carbon Trust, has been run where verification bodies have been assessed against a standard specifically intended for GHG verification activities (ISO 14065). The details of the assessment method and the application of the accreditation criteria were discussed with the pilot group in order to ensure that a consistent approach was being used.
David Hayward, Development Manager at UKAS, said “Everyone is concerned about the effect that green house gasses have on the environment, and this means it is crucial to have reliable assessment of emissions. Although there are verification bodies doing a very good job, historically there was no standard to demonstrate they were both competent and reliable. The development of PAS 2050 means there is, and that UKAS-accredited bodies can show they have been rigorously assessed – against internationally-recognised – standards and proved their ability. Consequently, companies can use the services of these bodies with complete confidence.”
Graham Sinden, Technical Manager at the Carbon Trust, said: “This is a huge step forward for the carbon footprinting of products. Companies and consumers can now have even more confidence in the results coming from the PAS 2050 carbon footprinting methodology, knowing that they have been certified by fully accredited and internationally recognised bodies.
“The Carbon Trust is pleased to have been able to facilitate the development of this accreditation programme by sponsoring the work of UKAS.”