What is Beyond Value Chain Mitigation (BVCM)?

June 12, 2024
3 Minutes
Photo by Nicholas Doherty
“Beyond value chain mitigation” is defined in SBTi’s Corporate Net-Zero Standard as “mitigation action or investments that fall outside a company’s value chain, including activities that avoid or reduce GHG emissions, or remove and store GHGs from the atmosphere.” 

‍What’s SBTi? Learn more in What is ‘Net Zero’ and ‘SBTi’? 🎓

The SBTI is a corporate climate action organisation that enables companies and financial institutions worldwide to play their part in combating the climate crisis. The SBTi recommends companies to support others, whether that’s their suppliers, customers, communities, and also provides initiatives to help organisations to reduce their GHG emissions. It’s really here to encourage corporates to think about their role in our global net zero transition, and how they can contribute to societal net zero: thinking beyond their own value chains when decarbonising.

Source: An SBTi Report on the Design and Implementation of Beyond Value Chain Mitigation (BVCM)

Examples of BVCM initiatives provided by SBTi, but are not limited to:

  • Forestry, e.g., Jurisdictional REDD+
  • Conservation projects, e.g., peatland or mangrove
  • Energy efficiency, e.g., cookstove projects
  • Methane destruction, e.g., landfill gas projects
  • Renewable energy, e.g., solar/wind/biogas
  • Industrial gases, e.g., N2O destruction at nitric acid facilities
  • Scale-up of CDR technologies, e.g., Direct Air Capture (DAC) and Storage

BVCM activities and investments are not accounted for in the company’s GHG inventory under scope 1, 2 or 3, and therefore do not count towards achieving an organisation’s value-chain emission reduction targets or net zero targets. For example, Company A manufactures hardware supplies, it decides to make a voluntary contribution to a project to replace traditional cooking practices with cleaner cooking alternatives in the form of cookstoves. The project itself could result in various benefits including; lower levels of deforestation, better health and air quality outcomes for local communities and potentially lower emissions. Despite the positive impacts of these actions, they do not contribute to emissions reductions with Company A’s operations or its value chain as households using the cookstoves aren’t suppliers.

Source: SBTi website - Beyond Value Chain Mitigation

So what can I do? 

Step 1… Start carbon accounting! 

SBTi’s latest guidance to accelerate corporate adoption of BVCM has listed step 1.1 as: Develop a comprehensive emissions inventory that covers at least 95% of company-wide scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions and includes a complete scope 3 inventory. 

If you haven’t started on your carbon accounting journey to measure your GHG emissions yet, it’s time to get start now, jump on a free trial with Sumday and start upskilling the team with Sumday Academy to understand the jobs to be done. 

If you’ve started measuring your emissions - great! You’re now on the journey to improve your emissions data, and in particular for Scope 3 emissions, it’s crucial to start engaging with your suppliers and help them start on their carbon accounting journey. Get started with our 4 steps Scope 3 Engagement guide to replace Averages with Actuals, so you can understand where they are at, what support your suppliers need, and identify where your company can make the most impactful contributions. Understanding this will help develop and influence your broader strategy which could also include activities associated with BVCM. 

Corporate climate leadership involves not only reducing emissions within the value chain, but also addressing unabated emissions through Beyond Value Chain Mitigation (BVCM) by supporting others in society. BVCM is a vital tool for companies aiming to support global climate goals.

Source: An SBTi Report on the Design and Implementation of Beyond Value Chain Mitigation (BVCM)