The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index

The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index

The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index

In the previous whitepaper, we outlined the International Carbon Efficiency Mechanism Attributed to Neutrality or ICEMAN. The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index is the mathematical conversion of the Carbon Factor into a unit of measurement. This measurement is between one and one hundred.

This number represents the Carbon Factor as a per­centage of carbon-neutral, where complete carbon neutrality equals one hundred. For example, a Carbon Factor Index of eighty (CFI 80) indicates the product or service is 80 percent carbon neutral. A Carbon Factor Index of one hundred (CFI 100) indicates 100 percent carbon neutrality. The mathematical formulas used to convert the Carbon Factor into the Carbon Factor Index (CFI) will remain proprietary. In addition, will follow cost accounting methods established for each industry. Finally, will be verified by a board of scientists and experts.

The Baseline

In every industry, we will establish a baseline of 0 percent carbon-neutral—the worst-case scenario, or highest possible carbon footprint, for greenhouse gas emissions in that industry. The percentage number counts up from that baseline to complete carbon neutrality—100 percent.

The same product produced by different manufacturers will have different carbon footprints based on a number of factors. For example, different manufacturers within the same industry may use different types of fuel. The fuel that creates the most GHG emissions will be used as a factor to calculate the baseline.

Likewise, different manufacturers within the same industry may use different processes to manufacture the same product. One process may emit more greenhouse gasses than another, creating a higher carbon footprint. For example, the wet kiln process for producing clinkers for concrete is less energy efficient than the dry kiln process. Therefore, concrete from two different manufacturers who use these two different methods will have different carbon footprints.[1],[2]

Carbon footprints of manufacturers within the same industry also differ based on what electrical grid they are on. The combination of electric genera­tion types within a grid determines the calculation of greenhouse gas emissions per kilowatt-hour. The worst-case scenario for an electrical grid in the US is a coal-fired electric grid. This creates the greatest amount of GHG emissions per kilowatt-hour of electricity produced. Therefore, coal-fired electric grids will be the baseline. From there, it goes up until you reach grids supplied by nuclear generators or renewable energy. For example, solar, wind, and hydroelectric genera­tion. Thus, producing no greenhouse gas emissions.

The type of grid a company uses is in combination with other factors to create the baseline for that product. In a simplified example, a manufacturer using the wet kiln method on a coal-powered electric grid would be the worst-case scenario. Thus, the baseline, 0 percent—for manufacturing clinkers.

These baselines will be established according to the most up-to-date science. Additionally, coordinating with both gov­ernment and non-government organizations. For example, the WRI, academic institutions, and the EPA and DOE.


Once we establish the baseline, we take the GHG emissions data from the individual company or manufacturer. Using that data and companies’ own cost accounting, we calculate the emissions of the specific product that is produced. Carbon-neutral status is calculated based on the greenhouse gasses emitted during the manufacturing process, plus the combined embodied carbon footprint of all the raw materials and components of the product.

The pro-rata sum of the carbon emissions of all the parts—the raw materials, subproducts, services, and manufacturer opera­tions—determines the index of the manufactured product. Once the Carbon Factor Index is known for all parts—having gone through this process with all the companies that process and produce those parts—the total Carbon Factor Index can be calculated for every manufactured product using a simple mathematical calculation of the pro-rata sum of the parts of the product.

For example, if a raw material represents 10 percent of that product, you prorate the carbon footprint of that material, just as you would prorate the cost of the raw material. Having already calculated the CFI for all the components and raw materials that make up the product, we can look up their index numbers, and from that determine the CFI of the finished product.

The calculation of the pro-rata sum of the parts may differ since different units of measurement are used from one industry to another. However, every industry has a standardized cost-accounting method. ICEMAN uses those same cost-accounting methods in accounting for carbon emissions, incorporating the industry’s method to calculate the pro-rata sum of the parts. Therefore, while the CFI calculations may vary between industries, the mathematical formulas will be standardized within each industry to maintain continuity.

Units of measurement also differ from country to country, but it is a simple conversion to go from the imperial system to the metric system. Regardless of the unit of measurement and cost-accounting method used, once the CFI is calculated, that value will be consistent across all industries and all countries.

In order to get the CFI value of a specific product, we will gather some additional information from the company. The company’s overall emissions data will most likely already be reported to the EPA for the larger companies; the EPA will also need to collect overall emissions from the smaller companies. We will then work with manufacturers to get the information we need about individual products and to reconstruct the entire supply chain, from the raw material to the finished product on the shelf.

Some manufacturers manufacture several different products. They will have reported their carbon emissions as a whole; we will gather additional information to calculate the emissions of the specific product. We would break this down using the corporation’s own cost-accounting structure for the specific products they produce. Corpora­tions always track their costs for each individual product; we will use the same structure for carbon accounting.

The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index Certified Trademark

Once adopted and implemented, the CFI value will be incorporated into a logo certification mark that will be licensed to businesses to place on their packaging, websites, advertising, or any means the business uses to promote their products or services. A certified label identifying the product’s relationship to carbon-neutral would be licensed to businesses.

The examples of the Carbon Factor Index label below have been designed with a black “CFI” for values below one hundred, indicating carbon emissions present in the manufacturing of the product. When the values reach one hundred or greater, the “CFI” is gray, indicating neutral—no carbon emissions present in the manufacturing of the product—or greater than carbon neutral.

The ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index

The Database

To verify the ICEMAN Carbon Factor Index certification, the index will be listed on a website in a searchable database open to the public. Manufacturers will need to stay current on their carbon accounting and reporting to remain certified. Carbon accounting is based on a one-year look back—at the carbon emissions in the prior year. Each year that may change, and an opportunity is given for manufac­turers to update their data. The database will also include Carbon Factor Offset values, since manufacturers may decide to reduce or offset all or part of their greenhouse gas emissions at any point along their entire supply chain.

[1] Engineering Discoveries, “Difference between Wet and Dry Process of Cement,” November 6, 2019,

[2] Lisa J. Hanle, Kamala R. Jayaraman, and Joshua S. Smith, “CO2 Emissions Profile of the US Cement Industry,” 2004,