New Initiative Takes Aim at Digital Advertising’s Carbon Emissions, Seeks to Standardise Sustainability Benchmarks Across Ecosystem
Digital advertising’s first-ever cross-industry sustainability group has been unveiled at today’s kick-off of the IAB Annual Leadership Meeting with a mission to deliver a standardised framework for measuring and reducing carbon emissions.
Tech Lab, Ad Net Zero and Scope3 announced the Green Supply Path Initiative, which includes the launch of the Green Initiative working group – open to all Tech Lab members globally – at a crucial point for the industry.
In this vital decade of climate action, advertisers, technology platforms and publishers are all seeking to make carbon-aware decisions that can’t be made without an accurate measurement of their supply chain emissions and established standards and strategies for reduction.
The new initiative will be governed by the IAB Tech Lab in collaboration with Ad Net Zero and Scope3 with more industry players to follow. Brian O’Kelley, CEO of Scope3, has joined the Green Initiative working group and will provide leadership and guidance to working group projects, as well as support the effort to recruit member companies and participants to ensure representation from every segment of the industry. Ad Net Zero will set policy for emissions measurement while IAB Tech Lab will oversee technical standards to ensure compliance.
Within the working group, media and advertising industry leaders will be able to collaborate on best practices for measuring emissions from the advertising value chain, shared reference standards and emerging emissions reduction strategies.
“Reducing emissions is our common goal, and to do that, we don’t have time to waste. As regulations and requirements take shape across the broader sustainability ecosystem, which are outside of our control, our industry needs to have a unified vision for how we go about achieving a net zero future,” said O’Kelley. “We must act quickly to create a platform that enables the entire ecosystem to move toward systemic change, while also accepting and taking into consideration that not all organisations are ready for radical action.”
“Brands, agencies, and publishers have been asking for this, and rightly so. Without industry-wide benchmarks, it’s impossible to know if commitments are being honoured and if we’re making a real difference. This initiative plays a vital role in establishing the technical requirements to support sending and receiving of emissions signals,” said Tony Katsur, CEO at IAB Tech Lab. “Working with Scope3, Ad Net Zero, and the entire digital media industry to bring this to life gives us the confidence that not only will the industry have standardised and accurate data, but will also ensure compliance with global environmental protocols and the ability to activate against them.”
The working group will officially kick off in February 2023 with the goal to release this first proposed standard framework this year with a focus on initial implementations by the end of 2023. All Tech Lab members are welcome to join and contribute.