The climate. You know itâs really serious when the US starts agreeing to finding targets for emissions. If you werenât frightened before, which you should have been, I reckon itâs proper frightening that theyâve turned round the mother of all self-denials.
Anyway. Itâs happening and stuff has got to get done. I think Iâll probably kill myself the first time I see Fiona Philipâs revoltingly sincere gormless face talking about how we all need to do better but so be it if the populace will listen. Morons.
And as for carbon approbation, the Lurker has discontinued referencing me as âG-Manâ, swapping it out for âC-Manâ which is slightly distressing, if only for the fact that I canât launch headcrabs at him any more. Now, weâve all established that actually children are a major contributor of lifetime carbon, so in fact the real crim is Slim with 3 and KV with 7, albeit by different mothers, however the Lurker is obviously poking a little bit on my 3.2 litre car which I do 600 miles a week in (sorry) and Chateau Amnesia.
So obviously the real deal is to use less energy and lack of heating in the east wing may help but more has to be done. To this end I will be swapping to train when the new lines come in. I may also well end up getting a hybrid for a motor although one has to note problems with certain levels of hypocrisy and lack of detail here. The Lexus 430h may be hybrid and therefore is Congestion Charge free in London but puts out several times more emissions than a little Smart Car which has to pay it. This is pretty basic stuff which TfL should get right, right?
Moreover there is a lack of accurate data on the whole-of-life carbon contributions of products in general. Ok your Prius may do a lot of miles but just how much did it take to make the batteries etc? You could do whole blogs on these individual issues so Iâm not going into detail here but it means that choices are not as clear as they should be.
And then, since I do have a larger house and a larger car, although we recycle, I wanted to make some effort to address the stuff that we do inevitably put out. Even if I reduce by a quarter (which would be huge) Iâm still putting out 75% of what I do now and for each of us, that is many tons of CO2 a year. So this brought into mind carbon offsettingâ¦.
There have been some doubts raised about the efficiency of carbon offset providers â is it really efficient / does it really work / is it a rip off / will credits be double sold etc? So I did a little investigation and found a 44 page report by the not-for-profit organisation Clean Air Cool Planet âA Consumerâs Guide to Retail Carbon Offset Providersâ which can be found off this page; www.cleanair-coolplanet.org/information/factsheets.php . A cup of coffee and a read later this turned out to be a fairly serious look at the issue and inspired some confidence.
The CACP paper is a due diligence report on 30 global offset providers ranking and rating them for their efficacy. It does highlight why research matters and you might be interested to know that about 70% of the providers do not make it to âTier 1â status. However, CACP does recommend five âTier 1 Providersâ in Europe; www.drivinggreen.com , www.atmosfair.de , www.carbonneutral.com , www.climatecare.org , www.co2balance.com . These provide multiple schemes to carbon offset in a number of different ways, from energy efficiency to funding alternatives, anaerobic digestion schemes to reforestation in geographically sensible places etc etc
So choosing a couple from this list (Driving green and Carbon Neutral) and knowing that all these schemes and oneâs calculations are likely to be subject to some pretty large rounding errors I have bought credits to 150% of our familyâs output. So am I an environmental paragon? Hardly. Carbon negative even? I doubt it really. But Iâd rather be a G-Man than a C-Manâ¦.