Empowering Procurement to drive Scope 3 Decarbonization

10/10/2023 | Reading time: 3 minutes

Companies have historically concentrated on reducing their direct environmental impacts, yet decarbonization in Scope 3 is a huge challenge for most organizations. Yet the emerging reality is that stakeholders increasingly inspect the specific climate performance of a company’s suppliers.

The Problem: Despite growing awareness, regulations and market demand, many organizations lack the resources, strategies and tools to manage the climate maturity of their supply chain.

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The Gap Between Awareness and Action

The Untapped Power of Procurement

Fact is, companies have the purchasing power to transform their upstream supply chains!

And can unlock this power to drive the strategic success of the whole company.

3 drivers for supply chain decarbonization: risk management, competative advantage and cost optimisation

The barrier to entry: One major obstacle has been the lack of a harmonized framework for sustainable procurement, leading to inconsistent practices on how to structure and engage supply chains.

ISO 20400 aims to solve this problem.

ISO 20400 – Leveling the Playing Field

The Multifaceted Benefits of Enhancing Sustainable Practices

A Step-by-Step Guide – The Tipps of ISO 20400

Wonder how to integrate your climate targets into procurement practices?

Here’s what the ISO 20400 gives as a guideline:

  1. Explore the Drivers: The first step is to identify and rank the unique set of reasons for implementing sustainable procurement in your company.
  2. Create a Procurement Strategy: Integrate your organization’s climate objectives into the procurement policy and strategy.
  3. Organize the Procurement Function: Set climate targets and according priorities within the procurement function.
  4. Embed Priorities: Integrate these priorities into the day-to-day procurement process, from supplier selection to contract management.

Assess Your Position in the Climate Supply Chain Journey


Effective procurement practices for decarbonization can make a meaningful impact, not just on an organizational level but also on international climate targets as 50% of all emissions are created in only eight global supply chains.

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Next Steps

This expanded blog post aims to introduce into the complexities and opportunities in sustainable procurement, without the claim to complete coverage of the topic. The focus remains on transitioning from awareness to actionable strategies, leveraging frameworks like ISO 20400 for an effective transformation journey. Empowering procurement and smart decision making.

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