How Boma scaled their sustainability programme with CarbonTrail

Stories of Impact
September 25, 2023

About Boma

Boma runs transformational learning experiences for future-focused leaders. They offer global online cohort-based courses and world-class professional development programmes, including Brené Brown’s Dare to Lead™ and the Crusaders Leadership Programme™. They also run E Tipu: The Boma Agri Summit, exploring the future of food and fibre.

  • Industry: Education and Events
  • Founded: 2018
  • Previous solution: Manual / spreadsheet

The challenge

We talked with Rosaria Ferguson, Senior Event Producer and Sustainability Lead at Boma. According to Rosaria, Boma’s challenge was to scale their sustainability programme in an affordable way. 

As a B Corp working to specific targets under the SDGs, Boma is committed to sustainability, including reducing their waste and carbon emissions.

Before working with CarbonTrail, the team had made good progress with some of their events. As Rosaria explains, E Tipu: The Boma Agri Summit 2021 and 2022 were certified as Ekos Zero Carbon events.

To achieve this accreditation, Rosaria and the team worked hard to manually gather data about emissions, speakers, attendees, and the event itself including suppliers, energy use, and waste generated.

So what’s the problem? Well, Boma is growing — and gathering data even just for E Tipu was a massive undertaking.

“We wanted to do it at an organisational level. As a production manager, I can tell you that logging everything became quite a manual process. It required a lot of chasing up. I don't have time to do that for the entire organisation.”

Scene from E Tipu: The Boma Agri Summit, an event run by Boma.

The solution

Rosaria and the Boma team signed up for CarbonTrail’s Trailblazer Plan, allowing them to easily get all the data they need simply by connecting their Xero account.

“It takes the pressure off and saves me time. CarbonTrail gives me more autonomy — and also gives Boma a more robust solution with less chance of human error.”

Rosaria is now able to export data and reports with a click, while CarbonTrail automates most of the hard work. “I was able to leave it for a few months, and come back to when I had the time and update all my transactions. That was the key feature: not having to log the data, but have CarbonTrail do that for you.” 

Rosaria is also excited by CarbonTrail’s use of AI. “Because we are a future-focused organisation, we’re always happy to explore tools that help us leverage our finite resources.”

The alternatives to CarbonTrail for Boma were either continuing to calculate emissions manually, or engaging a consultancy to do it for them. The problem with consultancies, though, is that the process can cost thousands.

As Rosaria explains, “CarbonTrail allowed me to see that it could be done at a much lower cost, and streamlined. We were able to scale our sustainability work across the organisation, without spending on every analysis, so that our funds can go to supporting local projects.”

The impact

What have the results been for Rosaria and the Boma team?

“CarbonTrail opened my eyes to another way of doing this work,” Rosaria says. “The dashboard of CarbonTrail has really helped to understand where our emissions are coming from across the business.”

The CarbonTrail dashboard means that Rosaria and the team can easily see how their organisation is tracking against its goals.

“At a glance I can go in and compare our emissions today with six months ago. This is much easier than having to connect with an auditor or look up a PDF to find the data.”

Would Rosaria recommend CarbonTrail?

“Yeah, definitely. It’s a far easier way to manage your carbon emissions in real time. It takes the onus off physical logging of every transaction — and it also automatically generates data across the organisation. It's not just our events or production, it's every single spend and transaction.

“The platform is easy to use, and the CarbonTrail team has been super responsive to any questions I might have.”

We look forward to seeing Boma continue its impressive sustainability journey!

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