Director of GHG Accounting Certificate
In the news:
NAU launches new professional certificate in GHG accounting
Professional training in greenhouse gas (GHG) accounting
Given the scale and challenges imposed by climate change, there is a strong and growing need for professionals with robust skills in tracking, reporting, and managing GHG emissions from companies and organizations. Individuals with a foundational knowledge in how GHG inventories are created can also better speak to the issues and challenges associated with net zero emissions standards (and claims), as well as the best practices for designing emission reduction strategies.
Need for skilled GHG accountants growing
Over the past decade, there has been steady growth in climate action by corporations, with many large companies setting ambitious, long-term GHG emission reduction and/or “net-zero” emission targets. Companies see aggressive emission reduction goals as good for business and a way to market themselves as climate friendly. However, companies cannot manage what they don’t measure. Therefore, the need for skilled GHG accountants is growing exponentially. In addition, in March of 2022, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed a rule change that would require all publicly traded companies in the U.S. to report their climate-related financial risk. The SEC proposed rule would also require companies to disclose their GHG emissions inventory, which has become a commonly used metric to assess a company’s climate-related risk or exposure. For companies to remain compliant with the SEC’s new proposed rule, they will either need employees trained in the specifics of GHG accounting or must hire consultants with this expertise.
Hands-on and in-depth training:
Our professional certificate in GHG accounting consists of four (4) courses that were designed in collaboration with industry professionals. Each course is fully online, thoughtfully designed around hands-on activities using real-world data and scenarios, and continually updated to keep pace with the evolving landscape of carbon accounting.
This certificate trains you to:
- Quantify, report, and analyze the GHG emissions associated with a company or organization, and
- Use reported GHG emissions to design effective emission reduction and mitigation strategies.
Two pathways to earn certificate:
For new and existing graduate students:
The Graduate Certificate in GHG Accounting is designed for existing students looking to get a competitive edge in job market. The certificate can be completed as a stand-alone certificate or the certificate (and courses) may qualify as elective courses in your graduate degree. Consult with your major advisor to see if the certificate will add any time or cost to your current education goals.
For working professionals:
The non-credit certificate in GHG Accounting includes the same curriculum as the for-credit pathways, but with more flexibility for working professionals. The courses are all online and you can complete at your own pace. You may begin the first course at any time, at your own convenience. All 4 courses can be completed within about 4 to 8 months, depending on how much time you devote each week.
Both the for-credit and not-for-credit pathways for the certificate are made up of the same four (4) courses. The courses are designed to be taken in sequence with the content building on previous courses in order to promote skill development and proficiency in GHG accounting.
Foundations in GHG Accounting I Accordion Closed
Introduces you to the emerging field of GHG emissions accounting and develops the skills needed to identify, verify, and report a corporation’s GHG emissions. This course covers the basic skills and techniques needed to generate GHG emissions inventories for entities or corporations, including the requirements for reporting and verifying entity-level direct emissions (e.g., Scope 1) and indirect emissions from purchased electricity (e.g., Scope 2).
Foundations in GHG Accounting II Accordion Closed
This course builds off the concepts learned in Foundations in Greenhouse Gas Accounting I, and introduces you to more advanced skills and methods needed to produce credible greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventories. This course covers emerging, evolving, and more advanced GHG accounting methods and approaches, including market-based approaches for Scope 2 emissions accounting and estimation approaches when gaps in activity data exist. This course, together with the first course in the series, provides you with the foundation to construct a GHG inventory for most types of corporations and organizations.
Value-Chain GHG Accounting Accordion Closed
This course covers the methods and skills needed to quantify Scope 3 or value-chain emissions for an organization following globally-accepted standards and frameworks, as well as how to quantify the life-cycle emissions associated with a specific product. Scope 3 emissions are indirect emissions that occur as a result of activities outside of an organization’s own operations, but often represent its largest source of emissions. Quantifying Scope 3 emissions enables organizations to comprehensively manage their emissions-related risks and opportunities, and provides a more transparent and holistic account of their GHG emissions or impact.
GHG Mitigation and Management Accordion Closed
This course introduces you to the best practices for designing emission reduction goals, evaluating the business case for GHG mitigation/management projects, and assessing the impacts of GHG projects to ensure they achieving their intended goals. To reduce GHG emissions, corporations often want to identify the most appropriate mitigation projects based on effectiveness, cost, return-on-investment, and other factors. Companies also need to assess and report progress toward their goals in a relevant, complete, transparent, and accurate manner that is consistent with accepted methodologies. This course introduces you to best practices for GHG emissions management and mitigation, and builds off the foundation developed in the first three courses of the certificate.
– Caitlin Brogan, GHG Accounting GCERT graduate.
– Charles Linkenheil