Carbon Neutral Program FAQs

1. What is carbon neutrality?

It is when the net greenhouse gas emissions of an organisation, event, service or a product are equal to zero. Carbon neutrality is achieved by reducing emissions and acquiring and cancelling offset units to match remaining emissions in accordance with the National Carbon Offset Standard and the Carbon Neutral Program Guidelines.

2. How long does it take to achieve carbon neutral certification?

The average time to become certified is about three to six months if all the relevant documentation is ready.

3. Who else is carbon neutral?

There are over 30 organisations, large and small, which are in the Carbon Neutral Network. Read more about them...

4. Why should I become carbon neutral?

Becoming carbon neutral demonstrates your organisation’s  commitment to addressing climate change and making a difference by reducing its carbon footprint. Read more...

5. How much does it cost?

There is an annual certification fee when you lodge your application. There will also be some external costs during the certification process, such as a third party audit report that is a requirement of the National Carbon Offset Standard. Contact us for more information.

6. How will consumers know that my business or product is carbon neutral?

You will receive permission to use the certification trade mark, which can be used to demonstrate that your organisation or product has achieved carbon neutrality against the National Carbon Offset Standard. The certification trade mark can be used when marketing your certified business product, service or event. Once certifiied, you will be given the Rules for using the National Carbon Offset Standard Certification Trade Mark which explains the requirements relating to the use of the certification trade mark.

7. Are there any ongoing requirements to maintain my certification?

Yes. To maintain certification and the right to use the certification trade mark over the five year period of the licence, you must:

  • Monitor and reduce emissions
  • Purchase and retire eligible offset units
  • Report annually
  • Undertake third party auditing biennially
  • Submit your documentation to the Department

8. Where can I get more information?

You can download the Carbon Neutral Program Guidelines for more details.

Other useful links:

9. Who do I contact to make my business or product carbon neutral?

Contact us if you have more questions about the Carbon Neutral Program.

Contact us

For enquiries and information about the NCOS Carbon Neutral Program call 1800 057 590.

Postal address:
NCOS Carbon Neutral Program Manager
Department of the Environment
GPO Box 854
Canberra ACT 2601