Integrated Reporting demonstrates the links between an organization's strategy, governance and financial performance and the social, environmental and economic context within which it operates. By reinforcing these connections, Integrated Reporting can help businesses to take more sustainable decisions and enable investors and other stakeholders to understand how an organization is performing.
An Integrated Report should be a single report which is the organization's primary report to shareholders and all stakeholders. Central to Integrated Reporting is the challenge facing organizations to create and sustain value in the short, medium and longer term. Each element of an Integrated Report should provide insights into an organization's current and future performance.
International Integrated Reporting Committee - IIRC
HRH The Prince of Wales has gathered together the Great and the Good of the accounting world to consider how historical financial data can best be supplemented by more general information on the use of scare resources and stewardship of nature's services and nature's capital. The Committee will strive to produce a concise and clear template for reporting how companies can sustain their activities at a time when population growth is straining nature's reserves.
Beyond the IIRC
It will be a big challenge to integrate sustainable issues into reporting and reflect our wider responsibilities as citizens of the planet. Having raised awareness the bigger challenge is how companies can reduce their carbon footprint, reduce their water consumption and reduce their demands of the scare resources of the planet and restrict the production of environmental hazards.
Almost every organization occupies buildings and releases CO2 by burning fossil fueals to heat them in winter. A large number consume energy in summer in cooling buildings using elecricity from carbon emitting power stations to fuel them. Almost none employ joined up thinking and make the connection between the two. Heat extracted from buildings in summer is normally blown away. The alternative is to store that surplus heat in Thermalbanks in the ground and retrieve the heat from the Thermalbanks to heat the building in winter. This saves carbon in summer and carbon in winter. It is the essence of Interseasonal Heat Transfer.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer can save over 50% of carbon emissions compared to using a gas boiler for heating.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer can save over 80% of carbon emissions compared to using standard air conditioning and chillers for cooling.
Reducing Carbon Emissions from existing buildings
Many large corporations would like to reduce the carbon footprint of their existing building stock, but are unsure how this can be done beyond attention to detail like increasing the insulation levels to reduce heat escaping in winter.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer can be applied to some existing buildings. This is often possible if the building uses air conditioning in the standard way, which is to use a large amount of electricity to "waste surplus heat" to the outside air in summertime. Depending on location and the buildings involved, ICAX may be able to reduce the energy consumption of air conditioning by "banking" the surplus summer heat in vertical boreholes in the ground.
In the winter heat is recovered from those boreholes via an ICAX Skid (which includes a heat pump) in order to heat the building more cheaply in winter - without burning fossil fuels.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer can now be used to provide on site renewable energy to heat buildings without burning carbon fuels. Interseasonal Heat Transfer captures surplus heat energy in the summer and stores it in a ThermalBank for release when it is needed to heat buildings in winter.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer also captures cold on winter nights, stores this in ThermalBanks™ in the ground and releases it to cool buildings in summer. Renewable Cooling is a more natural form of cooling with a much lower carbon footprint than the standard solution of providing air conditioning powered by electric chillers.
Interseasonal Heat Transfer™ is suited to some existing buildings and may be able to link in to existing heating and cooling distribution systems in current buildings.
Reducing Carbon Emissions from new buildings
Interseasonal Heat Transfer™ is ideally suited to well insulated new buildings.
Renewable Heat Incentive
Please see: What IHT is.
See also: Retrofitting IHT to save carbon emissions.