Carbon offsetting

Carbon offsetting is an internationally recognized way to take responsibility for unavoidable GHG emissions (e.g. everything that’s left when you’ve reduced your GHG emissions as much as you possibly can).

Offsets originate from projects that exist in two forms:

  • Avoidance offsets, come from registered projects that prevent GHG emissions from entering the atmosphere based on actions that are additional to what would have occurred in the absence of the project. Under these projects, current emissions are reduced, but existing CO2 is left untouched in the atmosphere. Examples of avoidance offset projects are those that implement energy efficiency initiatives, produce renewable energy, waste treatment, reduce forestry loss, etc.
  • Removal offsets, come from registered projects that physically take CO2 out of the atmosphere and store it long-term. Examples of removal offsets are regenerative agriculture, planting new forests, producing biochar(coal), and direct air capture technologies. Often the positive impact from offsetting projects goes much further than just climate, many projects also deliver positive outcomes for local communities, economies, health, and the natural world, thereby contributing to many UN Sustainable Development Goals other than the goal of combating climate change (SD 13).

For details of projects that may be suitable for your business, check these out:

https://www.carbonfootprint.com/carbonoffsetprojects.html

https://www.onetrust.com/blog/carbon-offsets-101-guide-for-going-climate-neutral/

https://carbonneutralbritain.org/pages/become-a-carbon-neutral-business

https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/plant-a-billion/

 

Be careful about choosing what you do though – check this out from Friends Of the Earth: https://friendsoftheearth.uk/climate/does-carbon-offsetting-work