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Carbon Footprints Management and Verification

In the first panel session of ITRI Net Zero Day, ITRI Executive Vice President Alex Y.M. Peng pointed out that 130 countries, representing more than 90% of global GDP, have pledged to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Taiwan, a key player in the global manufacturing sector, should find an innovative, systematic, and scientific way to cut carbon emissions and enhance its competitiveness. “The establishment of the Cloud Carbon Management Platform is ITRI’s first step in leading industries towards net zero emissions,” he said.

The Cloud Carbon Management Platform pinpoints carbon emission hotspots within businesses, helping them gain more insight into carbon emission data and design their carbon reduction roadmap accordingly. The platform analyzes the carbon footprints of a product across its entire life cycle (raw materials, production, distribution, use, and disposal), and then utilizes the data as a scientific foundation for further action.

The Plastics Industry Development Center recently collaborated with ITRI and leveraged the Platform to assist a bottled water company in conducting carbon footprint verification. Results revealed that material is a dominant source of carbon emissions. After refining the bottle design by reducing the size of bottlecaps, the company saved material use and cut down its emissions, which earns them a carbon footprint reduction label from the Environmental Protection Administration.

According to ITRI’s Green Energy and Environment Research Laboratories Division Director Chen-Chiu Tsai, the Platform has already amassed over 11,000 data entries. “These carbon footprint verification data collected from industries are valuable information, which can be shared with international partners. They can also be used for developing Taiwan’s Product Category Rules (PCR), which act as category-specific guidance for estimating and reporting product life cycle environmental impact,” he said.

Experts from prominent companies such as Evergreen Marine, Everlight Chemical, and LCY Group shared their carbon-reduction experiences at the forum.

Experts from prominent companies such as Evergreen Marine, Everlight Chemical, and LCY Group shared their carbon-reduction experiences at the forum.

Several participants from prominent industries in Taiwan shared their carbon-reduction experiences. Evergreen Marine Corporation Executive Vice President Pei-Chun Wang said that in addition to using advanced eco-friendly fossil fuels, the company’s collaboration with ITRI also solved their largest pain point: fleet scheduling. Ship captains used to need 4-5 days to complete vessel scheduling. Now the new solution automatically incorporates cost, carbon emissions, and profits into calculations and reduces scheduling time to merely 4-5 hours, significantly improving efficiency.

Everlight Chemical General Manager Wei-Wang Chen pointed out that collaboration across supply chains provides many carbon reduction opportunities. “One of the chemical sector’s biggest challenges is upgrading product quality, especially for semiconductor processes, without increasing carbon emissions and pollution,” said Chen. ITRI’s Peng suggested using reclaimed energy instead of primary energy and considering the total carbon volume throughout the entire supply chain. To be more specific, if carbon emissions increase as a result of higher purity requirements upstream, the efficiency of downstream operations could be boosted to reduce emissions and balance out the increase. This method, which ITRI is working on, requires precise calculations and relevant certifications.

LCY Group, the largest manufacturer of semiconductor wafer cleaner EIPA in Taiwan, developed a double-circular EIPA technology that recycles both isopropyl alcohol and water. Recently, the Group developed a carbon-free bio-succinic acid which can save significant amounts of CO2 emissions during production. LCY Group also plans to implement carbon footprint verification procedures during their product development stages. “With the assistance of ITRI, we are able to assess the carbon footprint of every product,” remarked LCY Group COO and CSO CJ Lee. “If we find products with very low carbon emissions or even carbon-negative potential, we can utilize them to offset the carbon emissions of other products or operations phases,” he added.

It is believed that through the Platform, businesses can have an effective tool for carbon footprint management and verification. Thus, they can examine their current status on decarbonization and identify corresponding strategies and solutions for improvement.