Want to quantify your company’s emissions accurately? Boston Consulting Group says that its CO2 AI product, which is a finalist in our 2022 Sustainability Awards, can do just that. We caught up with the company to find out more.
You’re a finalist in the Sustainability Awards 2022. Congratulations! To start off, could you summarise your entry in fewer than 50 words?
CO2 AI by BCG is an end-to-end, ready-to-deploy, AI-powered digital solution that corporations from all industries can use to quantify emissions accurately—and find solutions to reduce them at scale.
Why do you think the judges were impressed with your entry? Tell us about what is innovative about your project and/or about its impact on packaging sustainability.
CO2 AI addresses a key challenge for companies aiming to cut their CO2 emissions: just 9% of companies measure their emissions comprehensively - and just 1% reduce their emissions in a way that is in line with their targets. These numbers are shockingly low and indicate that the private sector still has a long way to go.
CO2 AI is an innovative solution that clearly changes the game:
1. We are more accurate: CO2 AI is built on the smartest and most comprehensive database and leverages data science to accurately quantify a corporation’s carbon emissions. This is the starting point – because what cannot be measured cannot be reduced.
2. We go beyond baselining: CO2 AI supports companies in taking the right decisions to lower emissions and developing their reduction roadmap – taking action now is what we need to combat climate change.
3. We drive collaboration: Decarbonization requires an industry-wide approach. That is why we partnered with CDP, the standard-setter for measuring scope 3 emissions, to build the CO2 AI Product Ecosystem and enable collaboration across the supply chain.
So far, we successfully implemented CO2 AI across diverse industries, enabling them to reach up to 30-50% more accurate footprint calculations and 30-40% emissions reduction.
For example, we recently implemented our software for a wine and spirits multinational with hundreds of brands. The company needed to measure their emissions across all scopes and operations which includes direct emissions from facilities, purchased electricity, raw materials, leased assets and so on. That’s a lot of information to collect which is often not readily available.
With CO2 AI, we computed their emissions at a product level. For example, to calculate the impact from manufacturing glass bottles, the engine quickly searched our databases for factors such as location of manufacturing, raw materials, glass color, recycled content, etc. As a result, we were able to correct their emissions baseline by 30 – 50%. This empowered our client to set more meaningful targets and move to action.
How has your innovation/initiative been received thus far?
CO2 AI has received very positive feedback so far. CO2 AI was a CODIE Finalist for Best Emerging Technology and our clients consistently highlight our superiority even against established tech players and other climate management platforms.
To quote one of our clients: “CO2 AI is the most comprehensive E2E tool for sustainability on the market and most advanced decision support tool”.
You’re shortlisted for the Best Practice category. What do you see as the key demands, challenges and opportunities in relation to sustainability best practice in packaging?
Across industries, immediate decarbonization is needed to address rising greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, companies face increasing pressure from stakeholders (e.g., regulators, shareholders, customers, banks, etc.) to provide transparency across all scopes of emissions and take clear action to reduce them.
Unfortunately, given the complex nature of today’s businesses and value chains, this is not so easy. Research from BCG GAMMA shows that, today, just 9% of companies measure their emissions comprehensively. There are multiple reasons for this, most of which are rooted in a lack of data and digitalization.
To take sustainable action and drive the journey to Net Zero, companies need to gather granular and accurate insight into their emissions - and explore the full range of possible abatement levers. This is where CO2 AI empowers companies.
Built on the most comprehensive aggregation of sustainability databases, proprietary machine-learning algorithms, and scalable web app, CO2 AI enables frequent and precise quantification of emissions as well as actionable recommendations to reduce them. Through the CO2 AI Product Ecosystem – which has been developed in partnership with CDP – companies can collaborate with suppliers on supply chain decarbonization. With CO2 AI, companies can unlock massive value:
- Measure: Increased accuracy of emissions baseline by 30-50% on average
- Decide: Increased empowerment to embark on the SBTi net zero journey
- Reduce: Enablement of 30-40% emission reduction
CO2 AI enables strategic and operational decision-making across an entire business, from sustainability teams, to product design, to procurement, to production, and to distribution.
The winners of this Sustainability Awards category will be announced at a dinner taking place at the Sustainable Packaging Summit in Lisbon on 13th-14th September 2022. To attend the ceremony, register here.