Measurement & Analytics

Carbon calculations for freight forwarders: Meet our game-changing freight emissions calculator

An image of screens from Pledge's freight emissions calculator overlayed

The transport and logistics sector is changing. As one of the biggest contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions, it’s been in the spotlight recently — and if nothing changes, it will be the highest emitting industry by 2050. As the world becomes increasingly aware of its environmental impact, businesses are seeking ways to measure and mitigate their emissions. 

Regulations such as CSRD in the EU and SECR in the UK mean mandated reporting of scope 3 emissions is on the horizon, and it won’t be long before this will also include the need for logistics companies to reduce their carbon footprint. 

To help the industry get ready for these major changes, we’ve developed tools that enable freight forwarders to measure, report and offset their customers’ carbon emissions. We hope our latest product will add to this cause by showing freight forwarders just how easy carbon emissions measurement can be:

Introducing our open-access freight emissions calculator.

In this blog, we’ll walk you through some of the details of our new emissions calculator, what makes it stand out, who it’s for and how you can start using it today.

Who should use this freight emissions calculator?

You’ve probably come across emissions calculators aimed at transport and logistics companies before — there are quite a few out there on the market. They take shipment data such as origin, destination and weight, and then use algorithms to generate estimated carbon emissions calculations.

Our calculator is slightly different. It’s designed specifically for freight forwarders to use. While it can’t be used to create and send reports straight to customers — to do that you’ll need to sign up to the Pledge platform — it showcases the added value of offering accurate, accredited and user-friendly carbon emissions measurement into your customer portal or TMS.

This calculator is ideal for any freight forwarder who wants to be prepared for the changes coming soon to the industry.

What features are included in this freight emissions calculator?

We recognise that there’s a lack of transparency in carbon emissions measuring and reporting that’s led to a distrust of carbon emissions calculators in transport and logistics. We aimed to build an emissions calculator that not only provides accurate results but offers full transparency as to how those results are calculated. Our goal was — and still is — to build the best emission calculator for freight and logistics, which is why we will continue to improve and refine our calculator as both the technology and the needs of the industry advance.

A GLEC-accredited and ISO:14083-aligned carbon calculator

The Pledge platform is accredited by the Smart Freight Centre to be in conformance with the Global Logistics Emissions Council’s (GLEC) framework for measuring carbon emissions. Our calculator also meets the standards for the ISO:14083Quantification and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions arising from transport chain operations. As our freight emissions calculator uses the same measurement engine as our platform, the calculations also meet these accreditations and standards. 

Our GLEC accreditation covers all major modes of transport, including sea, air, road, rail, inland waterway and logistics sites. By having one of the most comprehensive accreditation coverages on the market, we’re able to ensure freight forwarders whose services cover all modes of transport can confidently use our calculator and platform for all of their needs.

 End-to-end visibility of carbon emissions calculations

Visibility and transparency are key components of any calculator, but when it comes to carbon emissions calculators, there’s often a lack of thought put into how to demonstrate the end-to-end calculation at a more granular level. 

At Pledge, we’ve developed a feature called Clarity™ that demonstrates the methodology used to calculate the carbon emissions for each shipment leg and highlights where any assumptions were made. We developed Clarity™ to ensure there’s full transparency and visibility in how carbon emissions are calculated.

Overview of Pledge's freight emissions calculator's Clarity™ feature page with shipment data included.
Our Clarity™ feature enables users to view the methodology and any assumptions used in their emissions calculations.
A carbon calculator that’s easy to use

A core value of ours is to simplify sustainability for freight forwarders and their customers. To achieve this, we designed a calculator that any freight forwarder can start using with shipment data they already have at hand. To help you get started, we developed a series of initial screens that walk you through entering your shipment origin, destination and weight to get you started. 

Once you’ve entered this data, you’ll arrive at the results page, which gives you a breakdown of your freight carbon emissions. You can also add any extra information you have such as extra transport hubs, vessel numbers or carrier codes to increase the accuracy of your results. Using our database of emissions factors and routing algorithms, we can instantly show updated emissions calculations for your shipment.

Overview of Pledge's freight emissions calculator's overview page with shipment data entered into the data input sections.
Our freight emissions calculator is designed to be simple, clear and easy to use.
Share your carbon calculation using the share button or API snippet

We've included a share button on our calculator so you can share any calculations you think your colleagues might want to see. Simply click the share button and copy the generated URL and then send this to whoever you please. It'll open the freight emissions calculator for them with the calculation already entered.

You can also use our open API to make an equivalent API call to the Pledge platform API. This means you can make initial calculations in the freight emissions calculator, and then send those results to the Pledge platform once you have signed up, where you can download your results as a report.

Overview of Pledge's freight emissions calculator's API snippet page showing the API for the data that's been put into the enter data fields.
Use the share button or API snippet to share your freight emissions calculation results.
Start calculating freight emissions in seconds

If you’re a freight forwarder, you should already be considering offering your customers accredited carbon emissions measurements. With upcoming regulations and increasing shipper demand, it’s time to start preparing for the future of the industry. 

Our freight emissions calculator lets you experience how accredited freight emissions measurement can improve your proposition while giving you insight into some of the key features of the Pledge platform

Start now by inputting your shipment data into the calculator.