Beta v3 Release: Support for full range of GHG gases, 4th and 5th Assessment Report CO2e calculations, upgraded flights endpoint

February 24, 2022
Beta v3 Release: Support for full range of GHG gases, 4th and 5th Assessment Report CO2e calculations, upgraded flights endpoint

Sometimes a release includes so many upgrades that we decide to "version" it - not least to ensure that it won't break or interfere with existing implementations and allows users to migrate on their own terms. Beta v3 is the final of these versions before we go to production - and we're really excited to announce the following improvements.


Greenhouse Gases: CO2, CH4, NO2 and more are now supported

As of today, Climatiq supports the provision of not just total carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emission factors for understanding total emissions from an activity, but also the volume of constituent greenhouse gases (GHGs) from which that total impact is calculated. This is important, as different gases contribute significantly more to global heating than others. This means that dedicated reductions can have an outsized impact on tackling the climate crisis, such as reducing methane from gas leaks or considering alternative, nitrogen-free fertilisers. This was recently highlighted by the international agreement at COP26 to target the reduction of methane (CH4) emissions in the near-term.

The Climatiq API now returns all GHG gases available, and calculates kgCO2e based on either the requested IPCC methodology or the most recent available if not specified.
The Climatiq API now returns all GHG gases available, and calculates kgCO2e based on either the requested IPCC methodology or the most recent available if not specified.

Calculate according to the latest science: Measure using either IPPC 4th or 5th Assessment Report

This release also unlocks the ability for the API to calculate CO2 equivalence on the fly, based on more than one methodology; currently issuers of emission factors tend to use either 4th (AR4 - 2007) or 5th (AR5 - 2013) IPCC Amendment Report, and only a few release both - with none yet releasing 6th assessment (AR6 - 2021). However, nearly all release the “big three” GHGs of CO2, CH4 and NO2, which are how CO2e emissions are calculated, so Climatiq will be able to provide these for the large proportion of data sources. Over the coming weeks you will see more and more of the datasets represented in the API updated to include all this new information.

Carbon intensity of China’s Northeast grid as reported by the GHG Protocol, with IPCC AR4 and AR5 CO2e available.
Carbon intensity of China’s Northeast grid as reported by the GHG Protocol, with IPCC AR4 and AR5 CO2e available.

New flight endpoints, all GHG Protocol factors and more

That’s not all there is in Beta v3. More details can be found in the full release notes below, including on the full release of GHG Protocol factors and a couple of helpful new endpoints for calculating flight emissions with routes broken down into legs and automatically calculated. We also prepared a migration guide for you that includes more detail about how to switch over to the new Climatiq Beta v3. 

Though we operate on continuous release, we publish periodic Release Notes that highlight significant product improvements that require “versioning”. Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter to stay up to date with regular product news and updates.

Climatiq Beta v3 full release notes:

  • Added support for individual GHG gases as well as total CO2e. Responses from the ´/estimate´ endpoint now returns a ´constituent_gases´ object, which provides - where available - both the total CO2e as well as each of the constituent GHGs that an activity emits.
  • Added support for multiple methods of CO2e calculation, based on different conversion methodologies provided by the IPCC in their 4th and 5th Assessment Reports. The ´/estimate endpoint´ will return ´co2e_calculation_origin´ that will either be Climatiq or the source depending on whether the source provided a ´co2e´ or Climatiq has calculated it. Learn more about the provision of CO2e and specific greenhouse gases here.
  • Alongside this the latest spend-based emission factors from the GHG Protocol Scope 3 Evaluator are available (CO2e), joining existing US EPA and UK BEIS spend-based factors to provide a set of global metrics that can be used for supply chain assessment.
  • Added UK BEIS/Defra electricity transmission & distribution and both electricity and fuel well-to-tank-transfer (WTT) factors (CO2e)
  • Two flights endpoints have been added: ´travel/flights´ and ´freight/flights´. These intelligently calculate emissions for passenger or cargo transport, given an origin and destination - these replace the ´FlightDistance´ and ´WeightOverFlightDistance´ units which have been removed from the ´/estimate´ endpoint.
  • A number of updates have been made to units for accuracy and future-proofing, including:
  • Added time units ´day´and ´ms´ (milliseconds) #time
  • Added volume units ´gallon_us’ (US gallons) and ´standard_cubic_foot´ #volume
  • Added energy unit ´MMBTU´ (metric million British Thermal Unit) #energy
  • Added unit type ´data_over_time´ for data storage #dataovertime
  • Renamed ´spend´ and ´spend_unit´ to ´money´ and ´money_unit´ #money
  • Renamed ´amount´ to ´number´ #number
  • Renamed ´digital´ to ´data´ https://docs.climatiq.io/#data
  • Renamed ´size´ and ´size_unit´  to ´data´ and ´data_unit´ #data


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