Voluntary programs in Europe

Measure implementation in the private and public sector is crucial in order to effectively address climate change and promote sustainable development. In that direction, several governments are placing greenhouse gas reporting programs, which can be either voluntary or mandatory at different levels (regional, national and subnational).

 Since the end of the 1990s, several mandatory schemes have emerged on GHG emissions measuring and reporting and there has been a requirement for climate change related information by several stakeholders, such as governments, consumers, investors, researchers, environmental organisations, policy makers etc. Also, several voluntary programs have been established by governments, non-governmental organizations or business associations (Sources: WRI/WBG[1], OECD/CDSB[2]).

 At European level, except for the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, the greatest progress on climate change reporting schemes can be observed in the United Kingdom and France. For the rest of the EU Member States and in particular in the countries of the project partners participating in the LIFE Clim’Foot project, Italy has been involved in voluntary initiatives in the private sector; while the other countries (Croatia, Greece and Hungary) have no prior experience.

 As a result, the LIFE Clim’Foot project aims at developing voluntary programs in order to support both public and private organisations to calculate and/or reduce their carbon footprints.

Fostering the transferability and replicability of LIFE Clim’Foot activities and results targeting policymakers is one of the main goals of the project. The project have developed a report " Study on the replicability and transferability potential of the Clim'Foot Project". This document presents an overview of the LIFE Clim’Foot project, focusing on the lessons learnt during:

  • the implementation of national databases,
  • the promotion of the Bilan Carbone® tool for calculation of the carbon footprint of organisations (CFO) with country specific emission factors and requirements,
  • the development of voluntary programmes for CFO calculation and related mitigation actions,
  • the training for end users, the implementation of CFO in practice and general project objectives.

The replicability and sustainability have been analysed in the Consortium countries (Italy, Hungary, Greece, Croatia and France) and beyond. For transferability purposes, similarities and differences between organisation environmental footprint (OEF) and CFO approaches have been investigated along with the transferability potential of the national databases developed in the framework of the LIFE Clim’Foot project. The report is downloadable from this page

Moreover the Consortium analyzed the socio-economic assessment of the Clim’foot project actions that led to interesting results and lessons learnt, which are summarized in the short abstract downloadable from this page.


See the next page on the voluntary programs in the Clim'Foot project.


[1] World Resources Institute/World Bank Group (2015), Guide for designing mandatory greenhouse gas  reporting programs and World Resources Institute (2013), Designing greenhouse gas reporting systems: Learning from existing programs

[2] OECD/CDSB (2015), Climate change disclosure in G20 countries

Study on replicability transferability - Summary Socio-economic impact