Melissa Rosa | February 1, 2022
Planet’s mission to help life on earth extends beyond our products and services. In December 2021, Planet officially became a carbon neutral company as part of our commitment to sustainability. Planet worked with SCS Global Services (SCS), an organization specializing in third-party certification, validation, and verification for environmental and sustainability quality performance claims, to certify our operations as carbon neutral in accordance with the internationally recognized PAS 2060: 2014 Carbon Neutrality Standard. This certification covers the entire supply chain – from manufacturing and launching our satellites to all aspects of our corporate operations – for the 2020 calendar year.
“Planet’s mission is to help life on earth – and to fulfill that mission, we are not only committed to accelerating the adoption of sustainable practices globally, but embodying those practices in our own operations,” said Andrew Zolli, Planet’s Chief Impact Officer. “Using a rigorous, science-based approach, we are committed to reducing our environmental impact wherever possible.”
Planet’s direct and indirect GHG emissions (Scopes 1, 2 and relevant Scope 3) were calculated for several categories, including Purchased Goods and Services, Capital Goods, Fuel and Energy Related Activities, Business Travel, Employee Commuting, Waste Generated, Downstream Transportation and Distribution. This process was completed by SCS who evaluated Planet’s GHG inventory in accordance with the WRI GHG Protocol, a GHG assessment standard. The total 2020 GHG inventory for Planet was 3,482 metric tons CO2e. SCS found that the main source category of GHGs for Planet is Scope 3 (Purchased Goods and Services, Business Travel) and Scope 2 (Purchased Electricity).
“We applaud Planet on their commitment to carbon neutrality and the work they did to assess and verify their claim ultimately earning carbon neutral certification for their company for 2020. It was clear to us that their dedication to acting sustainably extends across their entire company,” said Dave Jonas, SCS’ Program Manager for Climate Consulting Services.
High-Quality Carbon Credits
To achieve carbon neutrality, Planet needed to purchase 3,482 tons of verified and retired carbon credits to fully neutralize the total GHGs associated with our 2020 activities. These were purchased through a custom portfolio of three high-quality REDD+ projects offered by Pachama, a Planet customer who uses ourdata to evaluate forest conservation and reforestation carbon projects globally and monitor them over time. The projects include Agrocortex and Brazil Nut Concessions in the Amazon region, and NIHT Topaiyo in Papua New Guinea, and each of these projects can be found on Planet’s impact webpage on the Pachama website.
“We’re grateful to work closely with Planet, a leader in high-frequency satellite imagery. We have a valuable partnership in which Pachama leverages Planet’s data to advance our work to evaluate forest carbon projects, and Planet turns to Pachama to neutralize their emissions with high-quality carbon credits,” said Diego Saez Gil, CEO and co-founder of Pachama.
These offsets were verified against the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS), which guarantees that the offsets purchased represent genuine, additional GHG emission reductions. Purchasing these offsets also guarantees that they have been verified by an independent third party, were only issued after the emissions reductions had taken place, and were retired within 12 months from the date of the declaration of this carbon neutrality achievement.
On the Path to Becoming Net Zero
2020 was Planet’s application period, meaning carbon neutrality could be achieved solely based on offsetting. Moving forward, we will work towards demonstrating reductions in its emissions in order to maintain its carbon neutral certification. 2020 was an unusual year with the start of a pandemic three months into the year and employees working from home for the remainder of the year. We embrace this challenge in our Carbon Footprint Management Plan (CFMP), which outlines targets for GHG reductions and details the projects that Planet will implement over the next year to show a GHG reduction on an absolute or intensity basis in order to maintain our carbon neutral certification. For example, Planet commits to reducing operational GHG emissions by utilizing renewable energy options in leased offices, working with travel partners that help reduce carbon emissions, streamlining our shipping for purchased goods and services by reducing the number of shipments and opting for ground transportation. With 2022 underway, Planet aims to promptly evaluate and offset our 2021 emissions so that we can begin devising a carbon reduction plan that will provide substantial cuts in our emissions in subsequent years in an effort to become a net zero company by 2030, if not sooner. In doing so, we hope to join other companies to do their part to create a sustainable future. Planet’s mission to help life on earth also extends across the world through partnerships that look to find solutions for deforestation, advance the Sustainable Development Goals, and enable corporate sustainability and sustainable finance.