Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Carbon Offsets

So I'm not totally sure I'm sold on this whole carbon offset thing. Overall, it seems like a get-out-of-jail-free card. As far as I can see the rationale is, "I'm gonna do this thing that I know isn't great for the environment... and make up for it by throwing money at these other things that are supposedly good for the environment." Hmmm.

But, just the way source reduction is WAY better than recycling, buying carbon offsets seems like a step in the right direction for me, this year, when I am going to be doing a ton of flying.

I looked at the Grist website (Umbra's column, to be specific) to glean any insight into which company is best. Umbra pointed me in the direction of Tufts Climate Initiative, which evaluated a bunch of different carbon offset programs. Even though they didn't get top ratings, I went with, because they're local to Portland and I know some of the folks that work there (I know, I know, not strong logic, but go figure).

I estimated that I will do 35 hours of flying during the next year. Using the carbon counter, that equates to 8.6 metric tons of CO2, which I offset by donating $103.20. Seems reasonable.

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