Impact Categories

The Tech Carbon Standard categorises tech carbon emissions into three key sections:

Upstream Emissions (Category U)

Emissions relating to the embodied carbon of hardware and the carbon emissions of the development and distribution of installed software used by the organisation.

Read more about upstream emissions.

Operational Emissions (Categories O, C, and G)

Operational emissions are related to the day-to-day running of the organisation’s IT infrastructure and services. It encompasses emissions from powering devices, data centres, servers, and cloud services.

Operational Emissions are identified in three categories:

  • Category O - On-premise devices and equipment
  • Category C - Cloud and managed services
  • Category G - Generators, producing power

Read more about operational emissions.

Downstream Emissions (Category D)

Downstream emissions arise from customers using the organisation’s technology, products and services, such as its public websites and applications.

Read more about downstream emissions.