Everything you buy and every service you pay for pollutes. In the case of a coffee, it might be a little. In the case of a Chevy Suburban or a flight to Durban, it might be a lot.
Exactly how much, though, isn’t easy to determine. That’s in part because hardly any companies comprehensively track their emissions — just 10% log or estimate carbon pollution across all phases of their products or services, according to the Boston Consulting Group. Some of that might be because some companies are opposed to carbon accounting, but in many cases, they simply lack the expertise to do it right.
Ignorance won’t get them far for long, though. In January, the EU started requiring companies to disclose their carbon emissions, and in the U.S. the SEC is working on similar rules. Just as the SEC helped to standardize financial accounting over the last nine decades, government regulation promises to do the same for carbon disclosures.
As governments have telegraphed their intent to regulate carbon accounting, a number of firms have sprung up to assist companies in the process. One of them is CarbonChain, which is announcing a $10 million Series A, TechCrunch+ has exclusively learned. The round was co-led by Union Square Ventures and Voyager Ventures.
The startup has been cooking for a few years, co-founder and CEO Adam Hearne told TechCrunch+. It was part of Y Combinator’s spring 2020 cohort, and it has spent much of that time building a massive dataset that covers 80% of the world’s emissions, he said.
“A lot of sources of emissions in the world are well known. If you think of refineries that have been around for 30 years, mines that have been around for 100 years, in some cases, ships that are 30 years old. There’s a lot of very predictable assets. And we know those assets individually really well.”