Under $23 US dollars was all that it took to support a carbon offsetting project for my flight to Hawaii, which was a big surprise. I was expecting some scary dollar amount to jump off the page like $150 or $200. Nope. No such nightmare did I have to endure. Different countries likely already have policies that promote or require carbon offsetting. Delta airlines has a Carbon Calculator that allows you to easily enter your airline confirmation number or destination then calculate your carbon offset instantly.
Bloop bloop bloop… a little calculating on the computage end of things and I’m done.
My 1.5 metric tons of carbon dioxide that I’m responsible for over my 10,120 miles flown is hard to imagine visually. An image of an enormous heaping pile of coal comes to mind. I think black soot when I think carbon. Like that old carbon copy paper or the graphite in a pencil. It’s much easier to imagine the trees I’m sponsoring.
Hopefully the trend towards offsetting increases as the benefits become more practical, logical and economical for the decision making power bodies. Canada’s new government is looking at ending some of the $1 billion subsidies per year it is forking out to the fossil fuel industry which will hopefully shift into sustainable and renewable energy infrastructure projects.
There were three different carbon offset conservation projects set up for me to choose from at Nature.org. I chose the Chilean Valdivian Coastal Reserve as my option. You can also donate to the Rio Bravo Climate Action Project in Belize, the Clinch Valley Conservation Program in Virginia or allow the group the decision power.
Realistically, carbon offsetting is a temporary fix in the meantime while we come up with actual solutions to carbon pollution. Until we have solar powered airplanes or other sustainable flights, this helps to make you consider your impact, have a guilt free eco-conscience and make a bit of a difference.