Carbon Offsetting 101

Carbon offsetting has received a lot of negative press due to fossil-fuel heavy organisations using it to greenwash the public and due to its reputation for being a way for the rich to offset their guilty conscience while continuing to fly around the world on private jets.

However, the reality is not so simple.

 

In order to avoid a global climate catastrophewe all need to go carbon neutral today - not tomorrow. 

Unfortunately, with today's technology and the lives we lead, even if you are the most eco-conscious of eco-warriors, it is virtually impossible to be genuinely carbon neutral without offsetting. Seeing as we don't have time to wait for technology to catch up, ideally we should all be offsetting our unavoidable emissions in the meantime.

 

By putting aside the price of a couple of Costa coffees each month, you can go carbon net zero - today. 

So, what exactly is carbon offsetting? 

Essentially, it is investing in projects that either reduce the amount of carbon going into the atmosphere, or that actively remove carbon from the atmosphere. The amount of money you invest determines how much carbon gets saved from the atmosphere, and in general, people invest enough to reduce the equivalent of their own carbon emissions - hence, "offsetting".

 

However, to ensure the carbon offset is genuine, the project needs to meet several criteria.

These criteria make sure that:

 

  1. The project needs these additional funds (it wouldn't happen otherwise)

  2. The project is verified (an independent organisation audits them)

  3. The project is permanent (it won't be completed and then abandoned a few years later)

  4. The project is guaranteed (if a planted tree dies in 5 years, there should be a contingency plan in place using these funds to ensure that an equivalent amount of carbon is still removed by alternative means) 

Luckily, there are organisations that set these standards and verify projects, so you don't have to. Gold Standard is a Swiss organisation that verifies carbon offset projects with the highest industry standard and is approved by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). It even goes one step further though, and also requires all of its projects to meet criteria that ensure that they have a positive & sustainable impact on local communities. Learn more about Gold Standard's criteria here.

By carbon offsetting with Eco Medics, you will be investing in Gold Standard-approved projects, and therefore not only will you be achieving carbon net zero today, you will also be helping to improve the lives of those who directly benefit from your offsets.

 

So, what are you waiting for?

Click here to complete the Eco Medics carbon calculator, pledge your reductions and offset your unavoidable emissions! The whole process takes approximately 10 minutes.