GLEC Framework: a universal method for logistics emissions accounting

This week, the Smart Freight Center released the GLEC Framework, a guide for shippers, carriers and logistics service providers on how to report emissions from logistics operations. It is meant to be used in conjunction with the Corporate Standard, and it has earned the “Built on GHG Protocol” mark for its compliance with GHG Protocol’s requirements.

Freight transport forms the backbone of today's global economy. Forward-thinking companies aim to control greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from their logistics supply chain not only because it is expected by customers, governments and investors but also because they recognize the business case of carbon accounting and reduction. Until now, comparing emissions across different modes of transport could be like comparing apples to oranges because so many methodologies exist.

The Global Logistics Emissions Council (GLEC), led by Smart Freight Centre, is a group of companies, associations and programs, and backed by leading experts and other stakeholders. It’s members include well-known companies such as DHL, SNCF, Maersk, TNT, Hapag-Lloyd, & Kuehne + Nagel. Since its inception in 2014, GLEC developed a universal method for calculating logistics emissions across road, rail, air, sea, inland waterways and transhipment centers. The “GLEC Framework for Logistics Emissions Methodologies” combines existing methods into one framework and fills the gaps.

This industry-focused guidance document is designed to work in conjunction with the voluntary GHG Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard.

The framework is designed to increase transparency, giving companies with smaller footprints a competitive advantage. Companies can also use emissions data for logistics business decisions, such as selecting more fuel efficient modes, routes and carriers and identifying ways to increase efficiency and reduce costs.

As a next step, GLEC will encourage widespread adoption by businesses of the framework, and embed it in green freight programs, carbon-footprint calculation tools, and national and international standards. Work will also continue to fill remaining gaps and expand the framework with Black Carbon and air pollutants.

GLEC and the GHG Protocol invite companies to demonstrate a commitment to a more competitive and environmentally sustainable freight sector by implementing the GLEC Framework.

See all resources that have earned the "Built on GHG Protocol" mark.