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ClimateSafe Standard

The threshold quality for ClimateSafe is to be 100% greenhouse gas free.

ClimateSafe certification can apply to an activity, an entity, a product or service where during the course of normal process greenhouse gases emissions are incurred.

Prescribing standards for greenhouse gas neutrality is problematic due to the fact that almost any activity or service produces greenhouse gases and ascertaining where one process starts and another ends is relatively new to mankind.

Additionally, the definitions articulating what constitutes a greenhouse gas or how they should be counted are typically not up to ICBE to determine. For example, emissions incurred while sending a package to a consumer via a third party, may from the consumers perspective be part of the emissions set associated with consuming the product.

However, using currently accepted international greenhouse gas emissions accounting practices, emissions from the transportation component appear on the balance sheet of the transportation entity, and not on the balance sheet of the entity fulfilling the order and orchestrating the delivery of the product to the consumer. This presents an apparent quandary that can be solved by assuming the vantage point of the certification marks intended audience.

In the above example, the standard for ClimateSafe is to encompass all the emissions that the consumer would expect to be reduced on behalf of their consumption of the goods or service.

Because of the great variety of potential ClimateSafe scenario’s, and because ICBE routinely borrows definitions created by others, rather than adhering to a rigid or narrow description to satisfy the meaning of the ClimateSafe certification, ICBE applies a general strategy or set of principles is to guide the certification process

The following procedure describes a typical strategy used in the ClimateSafe certification process.

  1. To qualify what constitutes a greenhouse gas emissions, as well which emissions or reductions may or may not be counted, ICBE follows the leading interpreters in the new field of emissions accounting and takes guidance from consensus driven processes within which evolving notions about greenhouse gas emissions are graduated into common use.
  2. Using common sense, emissions associated with the occurrence of an activity, an entity, a product or service are traced by ICBE.
  3. Resulting emissions are categorized by type and quantity and multiplied according to a warming scale provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other authoritative bodies in the greenhouse gas community.
  4. The resulting greenhouse gas total is expressed in Tonne Carbon Dioxide. (tCO2)
  5. The results are compared to several greenhouse gas accounting standards, such as the GHG Protocol, International Accounting Standards Board, and U.S. Greenhouse Gas Inventory Program, to order to distinguish which actor in the occurrence would typically, legally, bear responsibility for any emissions.
  6. A boundary is defined around the activity, entity, a product or service, that may or may not coincide with popular or legally applicable boundaries, but will aim to account for those emissions that are logically and actually associated with the occurrence and would need to be included to satisfy to the greatest extent the “climate change free” expectations of the service marks intended audience. The articulated boundary parameters their justifications and subsequent emissions results are made available to the intended audience.
  7. Any emissions that fall within the provided boundary parameters are mitigated by a counterbalance of greenhouse gas emissions reductions.
  8. The details surrounding these counterbalancing reductions are made available to the intended audience.
  9. The emissions data provided by the ClimateSafe applicant are stored in the ICBE database.
  10. Emission data supplied by the ClimateSafe applicant must remain independently verifiable.
  11. The certification mark is guaranteed by the ICBE while the ClimateSafe certification is in force. Any emissions reductions that a product or service may be short due to faulty data or inadequate reductions coverage, though ultimately the responsibility of certification marks holder, are insured in the interim against any insolvency by designated reductions reserves held by the ICBE.

In a generic sense, ICBE uses the sharpest, most broadly accepted standards in accounting for the greenhouse gas emissions and reductions to arrive at the “greenhouse neutral status” associated with extending the ClimateSafe service mark, with a disposition to benefiting the broadest possible interpretation as experienced from the audience’s perspective.

The following are key definitions provided by governmental bodies, the way ICBE and others commonly use them in the greenhouse and climate change arena.


1. Greenhouse Gases

The IPCC has identified 6 greenhouse gases.



Common Sources


Carbon Dioxide

Fossil fuel combustion, forest clearing, cement production, etc.



Landfills, production and distribution of natural gas & petroleum, fermentation from the digestive system of livestock, rice cultivation, fossil fuel combustion, etc.


Nitrous Oxide

Fossil fuel combustion, fertilizers, nylon production, manure, etc.



Refrigeration gases, aluminum smelting, semiconductor manufacturing, etc.



Aluminum production, semiconductor industry, etc.


Sulfur Hexafluoride

Electrical transmissions and distribution systems, circuit breakers, magnesium production, etc.

2. Warming Scale associated with Identified Greenhouse Gases as provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).








140 ~ 11,700


6,500 ~ 9,200



3. Basic Method of Calculating a Million Metric Tonnes of Carbon Dioxide Equivalent or MMTCDE.

To arrive at MMTCDE, multiply the weight of the gas times it's global 
warming potential (GWP). The weight of gas is calculated in grams, and one 
teragram (Tg) equals a million metric tons.

MMTCDE = (Tg of gas) x (GWP)

The items 1 ~ 3 are ingredients, if you will, while many other standards are open to interpretation, and likely to change over time.

For example, in item 4, data is a result of local circumstances and pertains to the carbon factor of a certain type of coal in the state of Alberta, Canada. The ICBE, in handling the emissions data of a ClimateSafe applicant operating within the applicable area of Alberta, Canada, relies on the “published” emissions factors as provided by the indigenous authority on that subject, without necessarily performing an independent verification of the reported emission factors.

4. Emission Factors used in association with particular regional Fuel Types, as prescribed by an Authoritative Governmental source.


Facteurs d'émission (CO2e)

CO 2

CH 4

N 2 0

CO 2 e

Natural Gas (g/m 3 )

1 891,000



1 916

Fuel Oil (g/L)

3 090,000



3 110,554

Landfill Gas





Orimulsion(kg/m 3 )





Wood and Wood Waste (kg/kg)





Spent Pulping Liquor (kg/kg)





Cost (g/kg)

Alberta Bituminous

1 852,000




Montana Coal Sub-Bitum.

1 733,000




U.S. Coal Bituminous

2 432,000




Saskatchewan Coal Lignite

1 427,000





In examples 5 ~ 7, several of the internationally recommended approaches to measuring a certain greenhouse gas are listed as they would be adopted by ICBE when such a client scenario presents itself.

5. Methodology for Calculating or Measuring the Concentration of CO2 in a Waste Stream, as prescribed by an International body.

To begin quantifying GHG emission reductions, it is necessary to first identify a technology or scenario to serve as the benchmark for the emission reduction project being considered. This benchmark should be as comparable as possible to the project, in terms of its boundary definitions and technical specifications.

It is expected that most CO2 capture and geologic storage projects will establish the benchmark by defining a system that excludes the installation and use of a CO2 capture and geologic storage system. For this reason, it is logical to begin quantifying the possible CO2 emission reductions from the existing concentration in the waste stream, which would be emitted to the atmosphere if no capture and geologic storage system were in place.

The preferred method for establishing this concentration is the use of continuous emission monitoring equipment which can be installed on the outlet of a waste stream and can track the concentration of CO2 over time. Several manufacturers of this type of equipment exist and its application has been demonstrated in the power generation sector in the United States.

There is the possibility, however, that the waste stream being considered is not amenable to continuous emission monitoring, either due to the concentration levels of CO2 present in the waste stream (too high) or because of other chemical species which may interfere with the accuracy of continuous measurement of CO2. For these situations, estimation methods are preferred.

Proponents can choose between using established emission factors and activity data (e.g. total production of raw natural gas) to calculate these estimates, or mass balance calculations may be used. In all cases, a rationale for the selection of a particular methodology should be provided in the Project Scoping Report and a complete detailing of the estimation methodology should be provided as an Attachment of the Project Reporting Templates.

Proponents of emission reduction projects may also decide to make their own periodic emission measurements to establish project-specific emission factors and improve the accuracy of their estimates. In these cases standard operating procedures should be respected for the emission measurement equipment and a detailed explanation of the emission measurement protocol should be provided as an Attachment to the Project Reporting Templates.

6. In trying to determine the beginning and end of an occurrence, sometimes only general operating principles are provided as a framework from which to initiate and base an accounting approach.

The first step requires a clear understanding of the project system boundaries, project sub-systems and their effects on the project GHG inventory. The second step involves the selection of a baseline according to difference methods, including technology matrix, benchmarking, comparison-based and simulation based approaches. The third step requires the application of rules to determine which baseline on the sub-system level is most likely to have been replaced by the project. The baseline validity and its changes during the duration of the project are determined as a fourth step. The variables (both project-related and policy -related) that could trigger baseline changes are also identified.

7. Further, language lending nuance to eligibility of emissions data is often constructed outside ICBE’s decisions making realm.  In ClimateSafe certification cases, ICBE will follow the interpretations of the leading players in the greenhouse gas community, or, if no such interpretation has yet become available, ICBE or its agents will generate their own interpretation in accordance with accounting principles generally upheld in the greenhouse gas community.

It must be noted that the criteria of eligibility of an emission reduction into a particular domestic or international scheme may have no bearing on the actual accomplishment of the reduction itself. So, to achieve ClimateSafe status, one may end up using emission reductions that may otherwise not be useful under a regulated scheme. The guiding principle here is that ClimateSafe means to accomplish environmental compliance over governmental tax or trading scheme compliance.

The fundamental criteria for an emission or reductions’ legitimacy must be that it actually occurred, and is quantifiable relative to an absolute total.

8. Greenhouse Gas Free

Being one hundred percent (100 %) greenhouse gas free translates to the purchasing of greenhouse gas credits or submission of one’s own reduction credits to offset the greenhouse gas emission produced in the production or use of the goods, or in the providing of the services.

Further ClimateSafe Certification Requirements

Data Submission

ClimateSafe certification mark holders are required to submit the relevant GHG data at least once per year.

Data Verification

ClimateSafe certification can be divided into 3 general groups, each complying with a different level of data verification.

  1. Small user, 10 to 100 tCO2/yr, supplies emissions data without independent verification, ICBE performs occasional audits on this user group.
  2. Medium user, less than 10,000 tCO2/yr, supplies emissions data verified by indigenous Certified Public Accountant or professional equivalent, while ICBE carries out occasional random audits on this user group.
  3. Power user, more than 100,000 tCO2/yr, supplies emissions data verified by an ICBE appointed Independent Certified Public Accountant or professional equivalent, in lieu of ICBE audits.

Accessibility to Data

Emissions data summaries related to ClimateSafe certification are housed in the ICBE database and are available for public review. ClimateSafe mark holder may use account features to regulate the level of detail in information made available to the public viewer.

Using Indigenous Reductions

ClimateSafe applicants are free to use their own reductions in striving for greenhouse gas neutrality, as long as these reductions would normally be eligible under common accounting practices.

Using non-Indigenous Reductions

ClimateSafe applicants are free to use any reductions in striving for greenhouse gas neutrality, as long as these reductions would normally be eligible under common accounting practices.

Borrowing Reductions

ClimateSafe mark holders may borrow reductions from the recent past, but not from the future. Ideally, emissions and any counterbalancing reduction used in attaining ClimateSafe certification are generated in the same calendar year or within one or two calendar years of each other.

Suggested Time Frame for ClimateSafe Service Providers

The certification mark as used by the authorized persons certifies that the service providers that display the mark have committed to being one hundred percent (100 %) greenhouse gas free within a specified time period.

For example, a company committed to being hundred percent (100 %) greenhouse gas free from 2010 onward, already in the process of reducing its emissions profile and demonstrating sufficient capability to achieve greenhouse gas neutrality by 2010, may use the label from 2004 onward.

Condition for ClimateSafe Goods

The certification mark as used by authorized persons certifies that the goods on which the mark is applied are one hundred percent (100 %) greenhouse gas free prior to reaching market or in their use.

For example, a Cadillac Escalade is delivered to a customer bearing a ClimateSafe mark. The customer expects the emissions associated with creating and delivering the vehicle to him to be taken care of. Here, the greenhouse gas neutral status covers the product cycle up until the customer takes possession of it.

In another example, a gasoline is advertised as having the ClimateSafe mark. The customer expects that the emissions associated with consumption of the products to be taken care of. Here, the greenhouse gas neutral status covers the product cycle until after the customer consumes the product.

Transfer of ClimateSafe status

ClimateSafe status may be transferable to indigenous marks in native languages, as long as the required data supplied meets the same ClimateSafe standards.

Labeling Requirements

1.  The ClimateSafe mark may appear on product, service brochure or be featured in any advertisement or at any event as approved in writing by ICBE.

2.      The ClimateSafe certification mark shall not be used in conjunction with any modifying terms or phrases or graphic images that might mislead customers about the extent or the nature of the certification.

3.      Wherever the ClimateSafe certification mark appears, there must be reference to a location where a description of the basis of certification can be found. The description shall be in a style and typeface that are easily readable by the intended audience, and an up to date copy shall be made available to climatesafe.com. Each ClimateSafe certification mark shall bear the following description:

“This business has no impact on climate change”

“This product is 100% greenhouse gas neutral”

“Our products are safe for the atmosphere”

“Toward Climate Stability”




Other language can be used after obtaining written approval by ICBE. Certification marks may sport solely the ClimateSafe Logo without any further descriptions as long as the reference to the location of the underlying emissions data on either climatesafe.com or the certification marks holders indigenous location is clearly revealed.

To learn more about becoming ClimateSafe, call (US) 352-367-1144