Press release

IISD Commits to Carbon Neutral Operations

May 13, 2004

International institute on the forefront of promoting greenhouse gas reduction strategies in the Canadian non-governmental sector

WINNIPEG — The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) has completed its second year of operating as a carbon neutral organization-reducing and offsetting greenhouse gas emissions associated with its operations and travel.

IISD's carbon neutral goal is part of a broader internal sustainability strategy being pursued by the institute as one of a very limited number NGOs participating in the Global Reporting Initiative.

For the fiscal year 2002/03, IISD achieved net-zero carbon emissions through the purchase of 375 tonnes of certified emission reduction credits. This amount represented emissions related to IISD air travel. This was the first year IISD tracked greenhouse gas emissions associated with any aspect of our operations.

"IISD is actively engaged in climate change issues domestically and internationally. Not only does our carbon neutral commitment further advance our work in this area, it is the right thing to do" said David Runnalls, President and CEO of IISD. "It has been a great learning experience for us. We've gained useful insights concerning how small and medium-sized organizations can set and meet internal greenhouse gas emission reduction goals and prepare themselves for participating in the emerging domestic emissions trading system."

For 2003/04 IISD expanded its travel emissions tracking to include IISD associates and Earth Negotiations Bulletin/Linkages team members. The institute also measured emissions related to energy usage at its head office in Winnipeg. These two decisions require the institute make a larger offset purchase this year, but also provide a more accurate indication of IISD's total emissions. This accuracy will continue to increase during 2004/05 when IISD will include employee commuting in its total emissions number. The institute will also measure emissions related to institutional office energy use in Ottawa and Geneva.

IISD's carbon neutral commitment involves not only purchasing offsets, but reducing its overall emissions footprint. The institute is actively pursuing emission reduction opportunities gained through energy use improvements. IISD also supports and participates in climate-friendly programs, including the Winnipeg Commuter Challenge, which encourages participants to use sustainable and active modes of transportation; and the Winnipeg Transit Eco-Pass program, offering transit users a discounted monthly bus pass.

IISD's greenhouse gas emission reduction purchase was brokered by IISD is working with on a proposal to bring more members of the Canadian NGO sector into the emerging domestic emissions trading marketplace through the creation of an emissions purchasing pool.

About IISD

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) is an award-winning independent think tank working to accelerate solutions for a stable climate, sustainable resource management, and fair economies. Our work inspires better decisions and sparks meaningful action to help people and the planet thrive. We shine a light on what can be achieved when governments, businesses, non-profits, and communities come together. IISD’s staff of more than 250 experts come from across the globe and from many disciplines. With offices in Winnipeg, Geneva, Ottawa, and Toronto, our work affects lives in nearly 100 countries.