Even if we look at reducing emissions by running projects using renewable energy production, zero emission transport and 100% carbon neutral materials, it will still have some emissions within its lifecycle somewhere. So, what can be done about a projects emissions, and how can offsetting play its part?
Carbon offsetting works by allowing companies to buy carbon credits. A carbon credit is the equivalent to a carbon reduction of 1 tonne of CO2 through any number of projects. It’s not just planting trees and can include investing in renewable energy schemes, capturing landfill gas, supplying clean cooking stoves to developing countries or protecting forests. The great thing about these projects is that they can benefit more than just carbon reductions and can contribute towards many other Sustainable Development Goals. Carbon offsetting is highly regulated but it’s important to make sure any credits meet the following criteria.
Additional – ensuring that the carbon reduction is real and permanent
Verified – proving assurance on the quality and credibility of the credits
Traceable – transparent and proving proof of the offset