Carbon Offsetting and Greenhouse Gases (GHG)
Greenhouse Gases are gases abundant in earth’s atmosphere. They are a kind of “blanket” that retains terrestrial heat and creates the natural and wonderful greenhouse effect which enables life on this planet. Yet as this layer gets thicker, the earth becomes warmer while developing a higher tendency of climatic instability. The main GHG are carbon dioxide (CO2), water vapor, methane and nitrous oxide. Since the Industrial Revolution there has been a huge increase in GHG emissions. Their high atmospheric concentration and the resulting climate change affect physical and biological processes around the globe.
Modern human activity is heavily dependent on turning carbon deposits (oil, gas and coal) into available energy. Power generation, moving vehicles, modern agriculture and the diverse array of industrial facilities consume stored carbon for short-term use – and from there it is emitted into the atmosphere. Turning organic matter into methane by landfilling waste, and over-fertilizing fields with chemical nitrogen increase GHG concentration as well. The livestock breeding industry is responsible for a remarking high percent of total global emissions.
The harmful human influence on the balance of GHG can be reduced in two ways: by reducing emissions at the source, and by sequestering atmospheric carbon. Reducing source emissions is done by decreasing the human activity producing them. This includes preventing the extraction of fossil fuels, limiting their use, stopping deforestation and avoiding landfilling waste. Carbon sequestration can be achieved by planting new trees, capturing and locking atmospheric carbon in empty mines or hard plastic using complex engineering methods, and by producing coal from woody material and re-burying it in the ground.
Carbon Offsetting is a global mechanism for reducing source GHG emissions or by capturing them from the air. Any entity committed to a certain level of emissions, can perform two key actions: reduce emissions which they are directly responsible for, or offsetting the excess emissions by reducing emissions of a separate entity i.e. by funding a project to increase energy efficiency, sustainable waste treatment or tree planting.
The Paris Treaty, signed in December 2015, requires all countries to commit to a certain level of GHG emissions, and accordingly restrict the emission of public and commercial GHG in their territory. Beyond this commitment, there are business, authorities and many private individuals that balance their emissions voluntarily – above and beyond regulatory requirements. Voluntary balancers choose to do so due to a practical commitment to environmental protection, or as a preparatory step for obligatory future GHG restriction. These considerations are added to the importance of belonging to a global community, adherence to international standards and the commercial attractiveness of “looking green”
A prerequisite for carbon offsets is the guarantee that emission reduction will be “additional”. “Additionality” would not be undertaken in a “business as usual” scenario. This principle ensures that reducing emissions from any project is added to a reduction that would have happened anyway (see “additionality” under project principles).
The Good Energy Initiative runs several additional Carbon offsetting projects.
For detailed project description please press the “our projects” button. For Calculating your carbon footprint press the “calculate emissions” button.
For offsetting your carbon emissions please contact us by phone 077-5112299 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org