Reduce what you can. Offset what you can’t.
Many of us own cars, some of us may even own more than one, but do you truly know the impact driving your car has on the environment?
For many of us we need our cars to get to work, take children to school, or visit elderly parents but can we do something about our carbon footprint and make a positive impact on our local environment.
Your Society are proud sponsors of ESI Monitor, who have recently launched Carbon Offset+ in the Channel Islands. We spoke to Fred Betley, Sustainability Advisor of ESI Monitor, about the scheme.
Hi Fred, can you explain to us what Carbon Offset+ is?
Carbon Offset+ was designed to help people in the Channel Islands start thinking about their individual responsibilities to help mitigate the climate crisis, and to act on it.
A large part of the responsibility rests on governments, businesses, and industries, but we should not overlook the impacts of our actions and behaviours.
When it comes to personal transport we have a lot of power over our environmental effects. The most impact we can have is by walking or cycling instead of driving, or reducing our international travel. However, for some this is not possible.
After we have reduced all that we can, there may still be some requirement for personal transport: be it a car, motorbike, boat, or flights. We believe that the best way for reducing our carbon footprint sustainably is to reduce what we can and offset what we can’t.
But what does carbon offset mean?
Greenhouse gases are elements and compounds that create global warming. These include carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, water vapour, and nitrous oxide. These are all ‘natural’ gases, but they are being emitted at extremely unnatural rates. These are commonly calculated as ‘CO2e’, or carbon dioxide and equivalents.
We offset your CO2e by supporting projects that absorb CO2e or prevent CO2e from being produced in the future. We will offset through the best international schemes in the world, including WWF Gold Standard Schemes, Verra, as well as the occasional independent project that deserves support.
How does the scheme benefit my local environment?
Once you pay to offset your carbon online a percentage of the money will be donated to support environmental conservation and restoration projects on land and at sea, local to you.
A member of the Society will sit on a committee, made up of members from local environmental groups, and between them they will decide where and how that money is distributed.
Right now we know all about it, how do we offset?
All you need to do is head over to our website, input the make and model of your car and how much you drive annually. You will then be asked to pay a one-off annual fee.
If you are offsetting car or motorcycle emissions and tick the appropriate box on the calculator, you will receive a windscreen badge to proudly display on your vehicle, demonstrating you have gone beyond a basic offset and made a significant contribution to the mitigation of climate change.
Displaying the badge will encourage others to transition into a growing local community who are creating a more sustainable future, for the World and the Channel Islands.
You can also offset vehicles, such as boats, and will also receive a windscreen badge.