Overview of Environmental Accounting and Reporting

Introduction to Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting enables organizations to track their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and other environmental data against reduction targets, and facilitates environmental reporting for both voluntary and legislated emissions reporting schemes.

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting (EAR) enables organizations to record environmental data such as energy consumed or energy generated at facilities or locations within the enterprise, and automatically calculate corresponding greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions resulting from the use of emission sources. This helps companies monitor emissions against pre-established targets or thresholds, identify opportunities for cost and emission reduction, and also help comply with globally compliant mandatory or voluntary reporting needs.

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting is an add-on module to Oracle E-Business Suite and provides multiple modes to capture environmental data, a GHG emissions accounting engine, and pre-built dashboards and reports to:

Some of the key features of Oracle EAR that allow you to achieve the above are:

Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting

The Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting application enables you to account, audit, and report greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The following sections provide a brief description of the greenhouse gas effect, regulations for GHG accounting and reporting, and the GHG Protocol.

Greenhouse Gas Effect and Global Warming

The Earth reflects the infrared radiation that it receives from the sun. Certain gases called the greenhouse gases in the higher layers of the Earth’s atmosphere absorb some of the reflected radiation and radiate it back to the Earth’s lower atmospheric layers and help keep the planet at a temperature that is suitable for life. This process by which some thermal radiation is absorbed and re-radiated by atmospheric gases back to a planet to keep it warm is called the greenhouse gas effect. Carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane, and ozone are the major greenhouse gases.

The concentration of the green house gases is increasing due to increased industrialization and burning of fossil fuels. This increases the thermal radiation absorption by these gases, thereby increasing the Earth’s temperature or resulting in global warming.

Global Requirement for Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting

Increasing awareness of the environmental dangers of global warming has encouraged both developed and developing nations to agree upon accounting and reporting greenhouse gases.

The Kyoto Protocol developed under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) aims at fighting global warming caused due to increasing atmospheric concentrations of the following greenhouse gases: carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexa fluoride and two groups of gases, hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons.

Regulations for GHG Emissions Accounting and Reporting

Many countries now have their own legislations that mandate greenhouse gas emissions accounting and reporting. For example, in the Unites States of America, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a rule mandating greenhouse gases (GHG) reporting from large GHG emissions sources, also referred to as 40 CFR part 98.

In California, the Assembly Bill 32: Global Warming Solutions Act was introduced by the California State Law to fight climate change by establishing a comprehensive program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from all sources throughout the state. This bill requires that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) develops regulations and mechanisms to reduce California's greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

In Australia, the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007 (the NGER Act) introduced a national framework for the reporting and declaration of information about GHG emissions, GHG projects, and energy use and production of corporations.

The United Kingdom introduced the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) Energy Efficiency Scheme that aims at improving energy efficiency and cutting emissions in large public and private sector organizations. The scheme is designed to tackle CO2 emissions not already covered by Climate Change Agreements (CCAs) and the EU Emissions Trading Scheme.

Voluntary Emissions Reporting

Today, many environmentally and socially aware organizations are voluntarily participating in emissions disclosure projects. For example, many organizations across the globe are participating in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) that was introduced in the United Kingdom. Through CDP, major economies measure and disclose their greenhouse gas emissions, climate change strategies, and water usage.

GHG Protocol – Global Standard for GHG Accounting and Reporting

An Increasing number of industries and organizations are now adopting environmental emissions accounting and reporting tools and applications based on the Greenhouse Gas Protocol to understand their emissions profiles and potential GHG liabilities. The Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol) was convened by the World Resources Institute and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and is used as an international accounting tool to measure, account, and manage greenhouse gas emissions. The GHG Protocol also serves as an accounting framework for all GHG standards and programs globally.

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting is based on the standards prescribed by the GHG Protocol. EAR lets you maintain location specific energy factors to determine the energy content in gigajoules (GJ) and GHG emissions in kilograms (Kgs) of CO2 equivalents based on the usage of environmental sources that cause GHG emissions. This information is stored in the Environmental Ledger and is used for reporting through pre-built Oracle Business Intelligence Dashboards and Reports.

Note: Although the Environmental Ledger stores the GHG emissions in kilograms (Kgs), EAR enables you to choose a desired unit of measure (such as a ton) for reporting and viewing GHG emissions in the pre-built Oracle Business Intelligence Dashboards. Refer to the description of the GHG: Emission UOM Class profile option for more information about using a unit of measure other than kilograms. See: Setting Up Profile Options.

Recording and Reporting Other Environmental Data

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting (EAR) can also be configured to capture and analyze environmental data that is useful to an organization for tracking multiple environmental aspects. A few examples of these types of environmental or sustainability data are:

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting (EAR), lets you compete in the global market and facilitates transforming your organization into an environmentally responsible organization.

Technology Overview

Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting uses the following Oracle technologies:

Environmental Accounting and Reporting

The following diagram provides an overview of the Oracle Environmental Accounting and Reporting application's architecture:

the picture is described in the document text

Environmental Accounting and Reporting (EAR) integrates with Oracle Payables and Oracle Inventory and enables you to perform environmental accounting for various transactions. EAR integrates with Oracle Payables to capture data while processing Invoices with or without Purchase Order match, related to the supply and use of products and services that have environmental impact. You can also enter this information for invoices after they are received and processed through the Payables Open Interface. EAR integrates with Oracle Inventory to record data related to the issue of Items to Assets that result in environmental emissions. You can also record environmental transactions manually in the Environmental Transaction Batches window or upload data from spreadsheets using Oracle WebADI Templates available within EAR. This data is collected by the Emission Calculation API that calculates the energy and carbon equivalent emissions by applying energy and emission factors and stores the information in the Environmental Ledger.

EAR leverages Oracle Data Integrator (ODI) to transfer the data from the Environmental Ledger to the Environmental Data Warehouse. The Oracle Business Intelligence application uses the data for environmental reporting through the pre-built dashboards and reports.

EAR enables you to record environmental transactions involving the issue of items, to assets defined in the Oracle Assets application. You can also define assets within EAR if you have not installed the Oracle Assets module. Refer to the "Defining Assets" topic of the Setting Up chapter for more information.

EAR allows you to map Environmental Organizations to projects and tasks defined in Oracle Projects. While processing Invoices that have references to projects and tasks, EAR uses this information to identify organizations to calculate and store environmental data based on the projects and tasks mapped to the organization. For example, a site specific construction project and task code could be used to account for environmental emissions related to the facility.