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Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Brookhaven Lab capitalizes on a strong energy management program that has existed for decades at the Lab to achieve substantial reductions in its greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint.

A major component of the Laboratory’s sustainability effort is the reduction of GHG emissions. GHGs, such as carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, methane, ozone, and others, absorb thermal radiation and trap heat in the atmosphere through a process known as the greenhouse effect. GHGs are divided into three categories: Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 based on their source.

  • Scope 1 - from burners, boilers, vehicles, and other fuel-burning sources
  • Scope 2 - from the generation of purchased electricity
  • Scope 3 - from business travel, waste shipment and treatment, and the delivery of goods and services

The Laboratory’s goal is to reduce Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by 50 percent and Scope 3 GHG emissions by 25 percent by 2025. To achieve this goal, we have taken a multi-prong approach that includes energy conservation measures, renewable energy projects, operational improvements, and infrastructure modernization.

carbon dioxide

Decreasing Scope 1 and 2 GHG Emissions

Brookhaven Lab is on target to reduce Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% by 2025 when compared to the 2008 baseline.  The 2008 baseline was 205,628 MtCO2e, making the 2025 target 102,814 MtCO2e.  In FY15, the Laboratory’s Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions totaled 120,584 MtCO2e – a decrease of 41% against the 2008 baseline.