EPA’s environmental performance

Reporting boundary


Organisation boundary

EPA uses the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol Corporate Standard ‘Operational Control’ definition to define its organisation boundary. The Corporate Standard states

 “A company has operational control over an operation if the former or one of its subsidiaries has the full authority to introduce and implement its operating policies at the operation. This criterion is consistent with the current accounting and reporting practice of many companies that report on emissions from facilities, which they operate”.

A review of the organisational boundary is undertaken annually prior to preparation of the GHG inventory. Details of the Operational Control definition with explanatory notes can be found in Section 3 of the Corporate Standard. This definition has also been used by the Australian Federal Government to define organisational boundaries for its mandatory and voluntary GHG emissions reporting schemes.

Emissions scopes and sources

In 2005, we carried out a comprehensive review of EPA’s operations to identify activities that generate GHG emissions. This included EPA’s direct activities as well as those that occur upstream and downstream of these direct activities. Once all sources of GHG emissions were identified, they were categorised based on the Corporate Standard’s approach to accounting and reporting of GHG emissions sources using scopes. 

Overview of scopes and emissions across a value chain

EPA's GHG inventory includes all six greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto Protocol.

  • carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • methane (CH4)
  • nitrous oxide (N2O)
  • hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
  • perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
  • sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)

Scopes help delineate direct and indirect emissions sources and improve transparency. The Corporate Standard defines three scopes:

Scope 1

 Direct GHG emissions that occur from sources that are controlled by the organisation. The following scope 1 emissions sources were identified as part of our review:

  • natural gas – tenant
  • transport fuels – vehicle and boat fuel
  • refrigerants – building, kitchen, laboratory and vehicle refrigeration.

Scope 2 

Indirect GHG emissions associated with purchased energy commodities including electricity and steam. Scope 2 emissions physically occur at the facility where the energy commodity is produced. The following scope 2 emissions sources were identified as part of our review:

  • purchased electricity
  • high temperature hot water.

Scope 3 

 All other indirect GHG emissions that are a consequence of the activities of the organisation, but occur from sources not owned or controlled by the organisation. These refer to emissions from activities that are upstream or downstream including the supply chain and waste management. The following scope 3 emissions sources were identified as part of our review:

  • natural gas – tri-generation plant
  • base building electricity – communal areas of buildings where EPA is a tenant
  • base building natural gas – communal areas of buildings where EPA is a tenant
  • stationary fuels – thermal generators including tri-generation and backup generators
  • air travel
  • taxi travel
  • public transport
  • reticulated water
  • office paper
  • waste
  • fuel extraction, production and transportation
  • electricity transmission and distribution losses
  • natural gas transmission and distribution losses
  • catering
  • staff commuting
  • courier services
  • printing and publication services

Page last updated on 24 Aug 2017