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The Journey to Net Zero Begins with Understanding the Destination

David Elam | December 7, 2023

The transition to a net zero economy is going to be both exciting and challenging. As EH&S project managers, we can ensure integrity in net zero implementation by understanding the evolving framework for net zero definition.


This article discusses the global goal of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by mid-century, reaffirmed at the recent COP27 conference in Egypt. To meet this goal, many organizations are making “net-zero” commitments, but these commitments vary widely, posing challenges for EH&S project managers. It is important to define net zero commitments clearly, such as, timeframe, targets for reduction, boundaries, treatment of carbon offsets and industry or technology limitations.  To help organizations achieve their net zero goals effectively, EH&S project managers should stay informed about evolving net zero definitions and frameworks.

This article appears in the December 2022 issue of EM Magazine, a copyrighted publication of the Air & Waste Management Association (A&WMA;

David Elam

David (Dave) Elam has been active in the environmental industry for 35 years, principally in the air quality management field. Dave serves as a Vice President and Project Director at TRC where he assists with project delivery, regulatory analysis and quality management in the air quality and energy transition areas. Contact him at

The Journey to Net Zero Begins with Understanding the Destination

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