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What are the Best Types of Carbon Software Solutions?


In response to the global climate crisis, more governments around the world, including Canada, the USA, and the EU, are planning or implementing carbon emissions disclosure mandates. This means more organizations will need software solutions that make emissions data collection and reporting as easy as possible.

What is a Carbon Software Solution?

Carbon software solutions enable organizations to collect, track, manage, and/or report their carbon emissions. They vary in functionality from solution to solution, and depending on the needs of your organization, each has its unique pros and cons.

We compiled this list of the different types of carbon software solutions to act as a guide in finding the best one to meet your organization’s needs.

CSR Software

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) software helps organizations be socially accountable to themselves, their stakeholders, the public, and the planet by tracking and measuring the impact and influence of their CSR programs.

Most CSR software is focused on managing philanthropic programs and volunteer efforts, but in recent years, more CSR software providers have added emissions tracking functionality to their offerings. These types of CSR software enable organizations to monitor and share the progress of their CSR programs including carbon emissions disclosures.

This offers organizations the ability to have a carbon software solution that also monitors their other CSR efforts. However, these CSR software solutions with carbon tracking abilities are generally not purpose-built for emissions tracking and reporting, which can lead to compliance issues or limited functionality regarding carbon accounting.

Carbon Accounting Software

Carbon accounting software aids organizations in calculating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by compiling an organization’s operational data like fuel combustion for operations, process, or comfort heat, as well as other sources of GHG emissions such as those in their supply chain or from their portfolio.

The advantage of carbon accounting software is it is generally purpose-built specifically to account for GHG emissions across an organization. This allows organizations to easily calculate and report their carbon footprint, but some carbon accounting software is limited by its functionality by not helping with organizational strategy or management. This can leave organizations without guidance on what to do to reduce their emissions or how to act on their overall sustainability or Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) goals.

Types of carbon accounting software:

  • Carbon Tracking Software
  • Carbon Reporting Software
  • Carbon Footprint Software

Carbon Emissions Management Software

Carbon emissions management software helps organizations with emissions monitoring, data collection, and reporting. Some carbon management software can also assist with strategic planning, decision-making, historical data analysis, and scenario forecasting.

Sometimes referred to as GHG emissions software or GHG management software, carbon management software takes carbon accounting one step further by enabling organizations to do more than just collect and report emissions data but also to tackle the strategic side of managing their carbon footprint. This enables organizations to take more actions to reduce their carbon emissions and reap the benefits of doing so.  

Carbon management software, like carbon accounting software, only helps organizations with carbon emissions and not other issues related to sustainability or ESG. This means users of this solution will need other solutions to manage the rest of their ESG and sustainability programs.

Sustainability Software

Sustainability software allows organizations to monitor, manage, and evaluate their impacts through operational data obtained from their business operations. It enables an organization to manage its entire sustainability program, not just carbon emissions. Sustainability software streamlines key environmental compliance and data management processes.

Some sustainability software may combine the features of carbon management software with the broader functionality of CSR software to provide users with one solution to manage carbon emissions and other sustainability efforts.

Types of sustainability software:

  • Sustainability Reporting Software
  • Sustainability Management Software
  • Sustainability Tracking Software
  • Corporate Sustainability Software
  • Environmental Sustainability Software

ESG Software

ESG software is a solution that helps streamline ESG data collection and calculate impacts through the various metrics included in ESG standards and frameworks. ESG software includes a whole host of elements under the umbrellas of environment, social, and governance. The environmental component of ESG reporting includes carbon emissions, in addition to things like waste management and water stewardship.

ESG software is the most comprehensive software solution as it enables organizations to track more than just carbon emissions. An ideal ESG software can collect, track, manage, and report on all aspects of ESG and sustainability, including programs like water stewardship and corporate philanthropy. This allows users to take control of their entire ESG program with one sustainable product, that can support an organization’s current and future impact goals.

Types of ESG Software

  • ESG Reporting Software
  • ESG Data Management Software
  • ESG Compliance Software
  • ESG Tracking Software

Find the Right Carbon Software Partner

Carbon accounting and reporting is an ongoing process, with regular updates required for leadership and investors. The standards, frameworks, and methodologies continue to evolve and staying up to date can be a time-consuming process.

Many organizations and investors are looking for partners who can help streamline their carbon emissions calculations and help keep them up-to-date. FigBytes is a cloud-based ESG platform that helps organizations keep track of their ESG reporting, including carbon accounting. Working with a partner like FigBytes helps businesses:

  • Establish a credible GHG inventory
  • Predict the best strategy to reduce carbon emissions
  • Reduce carbon accounting costs

Need help with your carbon accounting? FigBytes has tracked over 20 million metric tonnes of carbon emissions for customers to date through automation of data capture and calculations, helping them report to climate frameworks and commitments. Click here to learn more about what the FigBytes platform can do.

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