The problem that Scope 4 corrects:
Today our measures of business environmental impacts address the size and efficiency of business technology use, traceable from local business records. We’re not even trying to measure what’s traceable from what a business pays for throughout the whole economy. So in effect, the global impact is counted within a narrow local boundary, making the measures scientifically undefined, and highly misleading. Why it matters is that business, investor and policy decision makers then don’t know what impacts their decisions really have, and the research says most of any business’s real impacts are global. So we need to understand why the world economy seems to work so smoothly.
What’s counter intuitive for solving it is that the world economy not only LOOKS like a whole system, it also WORKS as a whole system. What you know is 1) all parts of the economy are supposed to be and 2) seem to act as if 3) they are competitively efficient. Otherwise 4) they lose their access to energy use, and the energy goes to someone else. Smooth working competition like that is 5) needed for a world system to work as smoothly as global data shows, and 6) making there no better assumption than that differences from global average efficiency are temporary. So unless someone can say why not, I think we have to treat energy use as being predictably proportional to GDP. That’s been peer reviewed as a general principle, that one can rely on the range of local or international variations being likely to be relatively small (maybe +/- 10%) for any globally connected part.
so…. there’s a LARGE miss-match
between the effects we see and the ones our money really causes
the scientific basis for the SEA-LCA “SCOPE 4” accounting principle,
That: Every dollar spent can be shown likely to pay for such widely distributed services throughout the world economy, that at least as a first assumption, it also pays for an equal share per dollar of the whole world’s economic activity and impacts.
In principle, shares of GDP seem to carry equal shares of responsibility for what the economy does to produce GDP