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CO2 footprint

When it comes to sustainability, the subject of CO2 emissions cannot be avoided. In order to combat global warming, it is of great importance that emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases are drastically reduced. Therefore, we have already started in 2018 to map our carbon footprint and to take measures to reduce it. We have also decided to offset all our remaining CO2 emissions.

For VP Capital, most of the emissions are indirect, namely the emissions of the companies in which we invest. We therefore include the emissions from our direct participations in the calculation of our footprint.

CO2 compensation 2018 and 2019 via WeForest

Initially, VP Capital has offset carbon emissions by planting trees through WeForest. Since 2018, this has been done in various projects around the world, for example 80,597 trees at a project in Zambia and 5333 trees at a project in Brazil. The counter is now at over 170,721 trees planted through WeForest!

Read more about our partnership and the different projects of WeForest here.

Carbon Neutral Company

Offsetting emissions can also be done by purchasing certified 'carbon credits'. These credits are subject to very strict requirements and conditions, in order to guarantee that they contribute to a decrease in CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. A company that offsets its emissions through these carbon credits may call itself 'carbon neutral'. For offsetting its 2019 emissions, VP Capital purchased carbon credits for the first time and we have since received the Carbon Neutral Company label for our 2020 emissions as well. For this VP Capital cooperates with CO2 Logic, a recognized specialist in the field of CO2.

The calculations, audited by CO2logic, include the following types of emissions:

  • Scope 1 and 2 (direct and indirect emissions from VP Capital's own sources): energy consumption of our office environment and impact of our company vehicles;
  • Scope 3 (indirect emissions generated by but outside VP Capital): our business travel, commuting, waste and scope 1 and 2 upstream emissions, but also the impact of our direct investments in VP Energie, VP Landbouw, Batenburg Techniek, HAVEP and Q-lite. For these companies we consider their scope 1 & 2, at the level of our participation, to be our responsibility.

For 2019, we have offset emissions through a combination of planting trees and purchasing carbon credits (Verified Carbon Standard (VCS)) through WeForest. Our companies made their own choice in this; HAVEP and Q-lite opted for carbon credits and thus also received the carbon neutral certificate for 2019.

For 2020, all emissions were offset by purchasing carbon credits (VCS) through CO2logic. These credits originate from an agroforestry & forest conservation project in Zambia. This means that in addition to VP Capital, HAVEP and Q-lite, VP Landbouw and Batenburg Techniek can now also call themselves certified 'carbon neutral' companies.

Reduction 2020 compared to 2019

Fully in line with our targets, CO2 emissions in 2020 were reduced compared to 2019, overall by as much as 20%. This reduction is an average of the results at the different companies:

  • VP Capital: -38%
  • VP Landbouw: +4%
  • Batenburg Techniek: -44%
  • HAVEP: -15%
  • Q-lite: +23% (due to acquisition)
  • VP Energie: -7%

Note: we are aware that the Covid pandemic is likely to have contributed significantly to this reduction, particularly as it has caused a large reduction in mobility. Covid will still have a significant impact on the 2021 emissions as well.

Science Based Targets Commitment

We want to further reduce our emissions, but what level of emissions should actually be the target? This is where the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) can provide answers.

As part of its Sustainable Progress vision, VP Capital signed the SBTi's 'commitment letter' in April 2021. VP Capital herewith commits itself to the carbon reduction targets that are necessary - scientifically substantiated - to achieve the agreements in the Paris Climate Accord to limit global warming. These targets will be formulated for both the short (5 years) and long term (2040) and relate to:

  • the emissions of VP Capital itself;
  • the companies in which VP Capital invests directly (>50% shareholding);
  • VP Capital’s real estate portfolio.

More on this initiative: Science Based Targets Company's

Next steps

VP Capital will naturally continue to work towards increasingly ambitious goals, further reducing carbon emissions and achieving the defined Science Based Targets. One component of this is to determine and reduce the emissions of our real estate portfolio. These emissions have already been roughly mapped out in 2021; as a follow-up step, this calculation will be further refined.

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