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Author Topic: Carbon Offsetting does it really do anything?  (Read 6870 times)
KenB
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« Reply #15 on: August 22, 2007, 09:33:31 AM »

Rob,

I heard the vacuous Sienna Miller on Radio 4 this morning too, believing that she was doing her bit by turning her thermostat down by 1 degree, and then jetting all over the world.

Every time she just pops across to LA, there goes another tonne of CO2  - right into the atmosphere.

But it's all OK  - she's "Offsetting".

She gave absolutely no further details about how or what her offsetting involved,  whether it was effective or whether the offsetting company that her agent had chosen wasn't just pocketing cash from the gullible.

Perhaps by appearing on "Today" she will have encouraged a few listeners to collectively save a few additional tonnes - so that she can continue her vital role.

Also on topic is the news that Yvo de Boer, head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), has stated that it is perfectly acceptable (in his opinion) for rich countries to pay poorer countries in full, to offset their carbon dioxide emissions.

Story here:

http://newsvote.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/6957328.stm

Previously the agreement had been for rich countries to tackle the bulk of their own CO2 emissions locally, allowing only a very small percentage to be offset to poorer nations.

This is clearly a move to let the Western world off the hook, and to further procrastinate actually doing anything about CO2 emissions.

In my book, if you make a mess - you clean it up, not pay some poor Chinese not to make an equivalent sized mess!.



Ken


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KenB
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« Reply #16 on: August 22, 2007, 10:03:07 AM »

List,

Wikipedia has a fairly informative article about the current methods for carbon offsetting.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_offset

Tree planting is often the most quoted, but they have to be the right sort of tree, planted in the right location.

It is suggested that 900 trees per year would be needed to offset the average American, so that's about 450 trees for the average Brit or European.

Planting them at 10' spacing would be 1 acre,  so on more realistic 20' or 30' spacing it would be 4 or 9 acres of trees.

Clearly this is not going to happen any day soon.

George Monbiot has been fairly vocal about carbon offsetting, comparing it to the practice of buying indulgences to save our souls from burning in hell.  This time it's not the Church that gets rich from this scam, but big business, and ironically we are probably still going to burn in hell.

On a brighter note, I had to google Sienna Miller to find out who she actually was, and I can say without a doubt, that aided with the correct script, she would make a more appealing spokesperson for global warming than dear old Al Gore.

I can see why the Radio 4 presenter failed to ask her any sensible counter-questions when interviewed - he clearly had his mind on other issues.


Ken

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Bodidly
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« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2019, 11:27:32 AM »

I know this is an old but a subject I would like to revisit. Are everyone's views still the same as 10 years ago?



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djs63
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« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2019, 04:37:14 PM »

There is surely some overlap between carbon offsetting and the desire to save the planet for our grand kids.

We planted 5 acres of trees, have an electric car, solar hot water and PV, wind turbine and gshp. The house has lots of insulation and we do regular beach cleans collecting plastic and other litter. But having completed a carbon offset questionnaire we learn that we are a menace to the planet. Two thirds of our off spring are in the USA and New Zealand with grand kids and visiting them wrecks our green credentials. How do we improve our efforts to “save the planet”?

Planting trees, either directly or indirectly, of the right type in the right place, must surely help the planet? surrender
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« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2019, 08:35:02 PM »

I know sometimes the truth hurts but,  the ONLY thing that can help this planet is for humans to stop breeding. Look at the state of the world, terrorism, wars, poverty and displaced people.
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Westie
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« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2019, 08:49:09 PM »

I know sometimes the truth hurts but,  the ONLY thing that can help this planet is for humans to stop breeding. Look at the state of the world, terrorism, wars, poverty and displaced people.

I agree but it probably will not be necessary, I think we are right on track for a major reduction in our planets human population.  whistlie





 
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JohnS
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« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2019, 10:33:14 PM »

It is not directly carbon offsetting but over the decade, I have managed to reduce electricity and gas consumption as follows

Sept 07 - Aug 09   average Electricity 4,550 KWH pa    Gas  25,100 KWH pa

Sept 14 - Aug 18   average Electricity 2,830 KWH pa    Gas  17,500 KWH pa

It has been a combination of more insulation, more draft proofing, better controls (time and temperature), 2.1KW PV plus immersion diverter, children off at uni so their rooms unheated and doors kept shut etc.  Offset by PHEV and away from home more that I have now retired.

Still work in progress, but now FIT income + OAP heating allowance  >  gas and electricity costs.
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« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2019, 11:05:00 PM »

Nice one John. We are on the same path. Do what you can when you can and keep improving.
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Bodidly
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« Reply #23 on: March 18, 2019, 07:00:15 AM »

. Do what you can when you can and keep improving.

This has been our approach but you reach a point of ever diminishing returns.

My biggest CO2 problem is my work and driving a single cab pickup truck. I do log deliveries and tow with it. There is no viable alternative at present or any on the horizon as yet. It's more than half of my CO2 at 5 tonnes a year so what are the options? I looked at offsetting some years ago when most of it was tree planting in the UK. I can't see we have acres of land where the budget for saplings is the limiting factor. Either the land is farmland and already gainfully employed or it's woodland that will be planted up anyway. I notice that a lot of the newer offset schemes buy efficient wood stoves for cooking in undeveloped countries. I can see this will work for the time being so why not pick the low hanging fruit so to speak?
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brackwell
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« Reply #24 on: March 18, 2019, 10:12:56 AM »

A much more efficient way of removing CO2 over trees is moss. Perhaps we need to grow moss farms.

There is plenty of "low hanging fruit"  eg phasing out SUVs and replace where poss with EV and stop accelerating up to red traffic lights.
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brackwell
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« Reply #25 on: March 18, 2019, 10:55:33 AM »

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/03/07/the-us-is-responsible
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biff
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« Reply #26 on: March 18, 2019, 11:47:39 AM »

It is wonderful what can be achieved when the chips are down,
                 Diesel engines are a good example of the way that the media can influence the technology to either destroy it or boost it into prominence .
 Diesel cars took a massive hit these past two years with Volvo now stating that they will cease production of diesel engines withing the next 5 years..So everybody is running for the exit and shares in the Diesel engines are dropping through the floor. Then along comes zero harmful emission Diesel engines that are both extremely economic and reliable, The cleanest engines on the market and next thing you know it will be petrol engines that are falling out of favor. Diesel after all, (I was told) is a by product of petrol, So it makes you wonder why were are not getting the full story in time.
     The bigger picture shows that the destruction of the rain forests and the cultivation of the amazon and other massive tracts of lands that help to stabilise and regulate the climate are now paying back with the extreme mudslides and torrential rainfalls both in South America and California and elsewhere in the world. I think that the message is getting home but the powers that be are slow getting off the ground.
  It is more than likely that it will take the deaths of thousands of citizens as a direct result of climate change before we wise up and get on with putting things right. We know what has to be done but we cannot put it into action. It might not be popular. We have not had a big enough shock or incentive. I don,t think we will have long to wait for it the way things are going.
                                      Biff
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Bodidly
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« Reply #27 on: March 18, 2019, 03:55:39 PM »

brakwell. Thing is I can't make SUV owners swap to EVs or kick the US up the backside for its CO2 output but may be able to help fund projects to cut CO2 in developing nations. What I find bemusing is how cheap this supposedly is. I pay £80 to offset 10 tonnes of carbon. I have done it for this year anyway and will just trust the money ends up being properly used and not a fudge.
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GarethC
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« Reply #28 on: March 18, 2019, 04:52:28 PM »

What's the view on (and this might already have been considered to death) investing in renewable energy projects? I. E. If I invest in an ecobond (or whatever they're called) that contributes to building an extra wind turbine, is that better?
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brackwell
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« Reply #29 on: March 18, 2019, 04:58:42 PM »

Or spend the £80 on paying more for my leccy from a co. that provides 100% renewable only.  I just might do that!

How do you work out how much ones CO2 production is and does that include embedded amounts in manufactured goods.

Ken
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