This keyword applies to items such as products, organizations and events, as well as energy carrier like electricity and gas, for which the specific CO2 emissions (carbon footprints) are either zero (e.g. electricity from renewable energy sources) or for which the CO2 emissions have been neutralized by verifiable compensation measures.
TÜV Rheinland has defined a criteria catalog, which defines minimum standards for the definition of “Carbon Neutral”.
The criteria catalogue is based on applicable international standards, and includes:
- For carbon neutral products and energy carriers, the certificate holder, i.e. the product manufacturer or head of organization, must demonstrate that the Carbon Footprint (CF) is zero or negative, within the applicable life cycle boundary. The quantity of certified products is an essential parameter to be monitored and balanced.
- For carbon neutral organizations and events, the certificate holder must demonstrate that the Carbon Footprint (CF) is zero or negative over a determined period, within the applicable boundaries of locations.
TÜV Rheinland verifies the following:
- For carbon neutral products and energy carriers, that the CF calculation provided by the certificate holder has been undertaken according to the rules set forth in ISO 14067, ISO 14040/44, or PAS 2050, and has considered all direct and indirect GHG emissions accrued in the applicable life cycle boundaries.
- For carbon neutral organizations and events, that the CF calculation provided by the certificate holder has been undertaken according to the rules set forth in ISO 14064-1 and/or the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.
- For all items, that direct compensation measures are quantified according to applicable common standards and methodologies, being free of any double counting impacts;
- For all items, that indirect compensation measures are in line with existing accounting and retirement rules. Procurement and retirement of registered CO2 certificates are allowed if the volume of retired CO2 certificates is equal or higher than the corresponding carbon footprint.
The keyword "Carbon Neutral" confirms that the certified item meets the criteria set by TÜV Rheinland.