Enterprise Carbon Accounting

by Paul Baier, Tim Greiner

Global climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our time and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions have been identified as a key contributing factor to them. The measurement and reporting of GHG, often expressed in terms of carbon emissions, is essential to help prioritize sustainability investments and for stakeholder communication. Yearly disclosure of an organization’s carbon emissions is indispensible if an organization and its stakeholders are to accurately assess progress towards reduction goals.

We call this emerging business process of calculating, managing, reporting, reducing and trading carbon emissions – Enterprise Carbon Accounting (ECA). In this report, we focus on the data management aspects of ECA as our analysis shows that data management is a critical factor for success.

As investors, customers, employees, communities and governments insist on more accurate carbon emission data, organizations are beginning to track carbon emissions as rigorously as they track revenue and expenses. Just as organizations purchased financial accounting software to automate their process of financial data management, they will similarly invest in ECA software to automate the process of carbon data management.

The market for Enterprise Carbon Accounting (ECA) software is growing quickly with the entrance of several new vendors in the first half of 2009. This study provides a current and updated analysis of the ECA market, highlights 51 vendors and names the seven leaders that have emerged in the space.


In recent months, the ECA market has been validated with the entry of software giants Computer Associates and Microsoft, as well as SAP's recent purchase of the two-year-old startup Clear Standards. The updated report identifies the seven current market leaders as determined by number of customer deployments, technology features, market vision and financial stability. The category leaders are: Enviance, ESS, IHS, Johnson Controls, PE International, ProcessMAP and SAP/Clear Standards.


"The ECA market is growing rapidly with many enterprises looking to evaluate and better understand their options for developing and managing their Carbon footprint," said Paul Baier, vice president of consulting services for Groom Energy. "The latest version of our report maps out the vendor landscape by area of focus and usability. It is our hope that it will help these organizations put together a short list of solutions to find the software that best suits their needs."


The report, titled Enterprise Carbon Accounting: An Analysis of Organizational-Level Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting and a Review of Emerging GHG Software Products, was created as a guide for organizations that are considering calculating or currently tracking and reporting GHG emissions. The report provides detailed information and analysis on the state of the market and 51 vendors in total. According to the research, although less than 300 companies have purchased or deployed ECA software, it is continuing to grow as businesses find challenges with spreadsheets and realize the advantages of database-driven applications for accurate accounting. There are more than 3,000 organizations worldwide that have calculated their corporate carbon footprint using spreadsheets.

Key Findings:

  • Organizations expect increased carbon regulation, especially in the U.S. with a new presidential administration
  • Approximately 3,000 organizations worldwide have calculated Carbon emission and approximately 300 have purchased ECA software
  • There are seven vendors that standout as leaders in the nascent market
  • The market for ECA software is still developing with less than 300 deployments
  • Despite the early stage of the current ECA market, more than 51 vendors offer software products
  • The number of organizations using ECA software is expected to quadruple in the next two years, driven by businesses that have not traditionally invested in environmental software
  • Organizations evaluating ECA software products in 2009 should consider 20 key software features in their vendor evaluation
Paul Baier Vice President of Consulting, Groom Energy

Paul Baier is Vice President of Consulting at Groom Energy Solutions, which designs, engineers and installs renewable and energy efficiency solutions for corporations such as Budweiser, General Electric, Ocean Spray, Raytheon and Thermo Fischer Scientific. His background includes senior executive roles in enterprise software and management consulting firms. Mr. Baier earned a MBA from Harvard Business School and a B.A. in Economics from Kenyon College.

Tim Greiner Co-Founder and Managing Director, Pure Strategies

Tim Greiner is co-founder and Managing Director of Pure Strategies. Pure Strategies is a sustainability consulting firm with extensive experience delivering sustainability services and GHG inventories. Pure Strategies clients include Dell, Mars, Oakhurst Dairy, Seventh Generation, Stonyfield Farm, Timberland and Unilever. Mr. Greiner earned a Masters degree in Environmental Policy and Business from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.S. degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

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