If you have used an earlier version of a Snapshot profile in your work and now find this profile has changed with the 2022 updates, this can present a communications challenge. Here are a few points to consider when communicating changing profiles:
- Firstly, change is ok. Community emissions reporting is still a developing sector, and it is important for council and community to understand that data and methods will continue to change as they improve. Changing profiles are a good thing because it means we are raising the standards as a sector and gaining a better understanding of community emissions!
- Secondly it is important to ask, does the new profile change your decision making? Snapshot profiles have never been intended to be a fixed baseline. The profiles are intended to guide decision making around the best areas to focus emissions reduction efforts and give an indication of the appropriate scale of emissions reduction targets. While the numbers may have changed between the profile used in your strategy (or other work), and the updated profile available on Snapshot, the key is whether the focus areas and scale of action needed has actually changed? If the focus areas and scale of action remain the same, which is likely the case for the majority of municipalities, then any communications should focus on this core message.
- Thirdly, change is ok. If the updated profile requires a shift in the direction of action, for example if transport is now a much more prominent sector than in previous profiles, this is valuable information. To conduct a review of a strategy, and to make a decision to update the strategy based on new and improved information is best practice climate action planning. It demonstrates commitment to effective action as opposed to commitment to the strategy document.