Session 8

Case - Low-Carbon Society


Session 8 starts with the focus module “Carbon Neutrality & Greenwashing” explaining why it is impossible for companies & governments to be carbon neutral.

The lecture of the Notebook: Climate Strategy details simplified steps to build consistent and ambitious climate strategies for their Business Case.

Over the following workshops, students choose a CO2 pathways as scenario, describe tangible daily behaviors in a low-carbon society, estimate market evolutions using the TCFD and build new value propositions compatible with low-carbon economies.

Course Outline

Carbon Neutrality & Greenwashing
Climate Strategy Note Book
Scenario & Emissions Pathways
TCFD: Economy evolutions
Market Evolution Drivers
Value Proposition

Key Learnings

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Carbon Neutral Companies = Greenwashing

Many companies claim to be or reach carbon neutrality in the future:

On their products & services: AirFrance full activity flights, L'Oréal carbon neutral industrial sites, Volkswagen and Google carbon neutrality on all activities.

French Energy Agency Report

Individually or at their scale, economic actors, communities and citizens are not, nor can they become, or claim to be carbon neutral"

0 does not mean Carbon Neutrality

Carbon neutrality claims comes often with several misleading techniques & assumptions:

It misuses of the scientific definition of carbon neutrality while not reducing emissions, clearing the company of its responsibilities by croping them, misusing carbon accounting and assuming unrealistic carbon capture capacities.

Carbon Neutrality demands Radical Changes

Carbon neutrality is to be applied only at a planetary scale: it is achieved when human CO2 removals balance human CO2 emissions at the global scale.

While the human CO2 emissions keep increasing, human CO2 removals are insignificant. Reaching carbon neutrality demands to:

  • Reduce very fast and drastically the emissions,
  • Develop at very large scale human CO2 removals.

Product use: arbitrary CO2 assignation

Splitting the CO2 emissions from the usage of a product or service amongst people and companies is an arbitrary decisions.

Value chain: arbitrary CO2 assignation

Splitting the CO2 emissions from the manufacture of a product amongst companies of a value chain is an arbitrary decisions.

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Student Projects

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Pedagogical Note