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Different Accounting for Different Purposes? Yes, for Carbon too!

Accounting professors routinely explain away the frustrating rules of accounting by declaring, "different accounting for different purposes." Well, I hate to say it, but I understand that adage better now today because it goes for carbon accounting too.

Typically, carbon accounting methods for Scope 2 carbon emissions are based on blended emissions intensity factors. This is not ideal for decarbonization master planning because it doesn't account for electricity use at different times of day, which can yield wildly different emissions impacts.

If you are simply looking for a top level assessment of your company's emissions footprint, using annual, blended emissions factors, may be just fine. However, if you are using carbon emissions accounting to make decisions or support investments, using near real-time tracking of emissions is and should be expected. Hourly carbon accounting creates a transparent, verifiable and defensible approach to measuring an organization's decarbonization strategies that funders, investors and boards of directors are beginning to require.

Strategies like renewable energy sources, battery storage, grid-connected demand management, aggressively attacking operating carbon and peak load shifting will be most accurate when using hourly carbon accounting methods.

Because AUROS Group is vested in merging building science with data science, it made perfect sense for us to tackle the challenge of integrating hourly carbon accounting into our clients' decarbonization master planning.

Hourly Carbon Emissions Accounting Methodology
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We routinely share best practices across the building science and data science industries to accelerate the transition to decarbonized buildings and open-sourcing our methodology is one more step on our journey. Feel free to share our paper with your teams, clients and partners. A special thank you to Carolyn Casavan, Casavan Consulting, for her collaboration on this effort. Carolyn is brilliant and resolute in her determination to get things right.

If you are a developer or owner of buildings and you are attempting to prioritize investments in decarbonization across a portfolio of buildings, our whitepaper will show you the path to ensure the decisions you make are defensible and based on real-time carbon emissions accounting.

As always, if we can be helpful in your decarbonization journey, reach out at


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