Each year, we inventory and calculate Scope 1 (direct emissions from our equipment) and Scope 2 emissions (from the electricity and steam we buy from local utilities) globally for facilities under our operational control. With global operations, we select regionally-appropriate factors from the International Energy Agency, United States Environmental Protection Agency, or The Climate Registry, unless the facility has Continuous Emissions Monitoring Systems which take precedent. Our assessment includes all six Kyoto protocol gases, plus additional refrigerants and is based on The Climate Registry, except where otherwise required by law, such as the US EPA Part 98 Mandatory Reporting Rule. We currently use location-based Scope 2 calculations, although we are assessing market-based mechanisms to reduce our footprint and will adjust our reporting in the future as needed.
For our Strive 35 goals, we established a new baseline year of 2019 because it was the most recent, full year of data available while conducting the carbon reduction feasibility study that informed our goal setting process.
At our Decatur, Illinois facility, we operate a carbon sequestration well that has the capacity to permanently sequester 1.1 million metric tons of CO2 annually. The amount of CO2 sequestered is subtracted from our Scope 1 and 2 emissions to calculate our total global emissions.
In 2020, we saw an 8.9% reduction in absolute GHG emissions. Although we implemented several energy efficiency projects in the previous years and are starting to see the results of those efforts, the majority of the reduction in emissions came from the shutdown of our dry corn mills in the U.S. The mills were not in operation for three quarters of the year, although in Q2 2021, they resumed operation.
Scope 3 (Supply Chain) GHG Emissions
In 2018, we conducted an assessment of our Scope 3 emission profile and identified the top categories where ADM focuses its efforts to reduce the supply chain GHG emissions. While considering ADM’s ability to drive change, significance to stakeholder groups and absolute contribution of emissions, the assessment identified the below categories as material for ADM:
Working to address our Scope 3 footprint, we have identified categories 1 and 4 as our greatest opportunity to make meaningful reductions. Our direct grower relationships enable us to participate in supply chain collaboration projects focused on sustainable and regenerative agriculture. In the U.S., Field to Market is one such alliance, through which we drive continuous improvement programs in agricultural practices and systems across the U.S. Through the collaboration, we partner with downstream customers to implement projects that focus on supporting farmers in adopting practices that address water quality and soil health, such as cover crops, reduced tillage, complex crop rotations, and nutrient management to reduce soil erosion, nutrient run-off, and GHG emissions.
We intend to set a Scope 3 reduction target in 2021.