Our planet is in danger, we know that for certain. Not only is there a massive amount of single use plastic floating around our oceans, there is also an urgent need to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions before it is too late.
The line-of-no-return is getting closer every day.
We can reduce our use of plastics, recycle our clothes, and ensure we waste less food. However, to save our planet there is also another essential ingredient – Carbon Offsetting.
What Is Carbon Offsetting?
Carbon offsetting is the process by which we compensate for carbon dioxide emissions caused by industrial or human activity. Extra carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases the greenhouse gas effect. In doing so, more thermal energy is trapped in the atmosphere causing the planet to warm.
How Does It Work?
Carbon offsetting schemes allow companies and individuals to balance out their carbon footprint by investing in projects. These are often located in developing countries.
Although the schemes vary widely in terms of cost, the premise is generally the same. It involves rolling out clean energy technologies, purchasing and ripping up carbon credits from an emissions trade scheme, or 'soaking' up CO2 directly through planting trees.
When paying to offset around 1 tonne of CO2 a family would pay (on average) £8. This means that offsetting a years' worth of gas and electricity use for the year would cost around £45.
There are some reservations.
Partly because of a lack of evidence and partly because of other hesitations, critics have identified some key areas that need developing.
The biggest concern is that schemes need to operate alongside carbon reductions programs rather instead of them to fully overcome the problem.
How Can You Get Involved?
To take your first step towards offsetting your carbon footprint you must first calculate your personal carbon emissions and footprint.
This can be done using a calculator:
These questionnaires take into account your meat and dairy consumption, transport options, flights and shopping habits (They might judge you for how much Dominos you’ve eaten but they will help to reduce your impact on the planet).
Once you have worked out your footprint you can choose a scheme to invest in. You can then gain a clearer understanding of your impact on the planet.
Our brand is always looking to learn and improve. From recycled plastic packaging to LED lights in our store – let us know if you have any ideas about how we can work to reduce our carbon footprint! We're ready to hear your suggestions!