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5 ways to offset your holiday's carbon emissions

Travelling
5 minute guide

Georgina Wilson-Powell

14 August 2017

Carbon offsetting is back in vogue after a slew of spurious projects and badly reported data. Carbon insetting (a more holistic way of replacing natural resources in the areas that you affect) is being adopted by big brands like Nespresso and Chanel and on a personal level, it's never been easier to calculate and offset your travel emissions.

In 2017 carbon offsetting is about much more than planting the odd tree. (See our feature about why it's time to look again at carbon offsetting here.) 

Air travel is responsible for 10% of our contribution to global warming - a return flight from London to New York produces more emissions that one person's supposed yearly allowance. If we want to keep on flying, it's time to give something back.

These five companies offer different ways to offset your carbon emissions and it's never been easier to track your emissions and the impact their offsetting projects are having on the world. Look for companies who commit to the Voluntary Gold Standard or Voluntary Carbon Standard or the Climate Action Reserve.

TripZero

A hotel booking portal, TripZero makes offsetting not only easy but also free. Book your hotel accommodation through them and they'll work out your trip's carbon footprint and offset the whole thing. Try the Carbon Footprint Calculator. It offsets by supporting various projects that include reforestation, renewable energy and methane reduction.

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Some wetlands are good at acting like carbon sinks and can increase biodiversity

TerraCarbon

TerraCarbon is an advisory company that helps companies and charities offset their carbon emissions by funding forest and wetland conservation all over the world in countries like Colombia and Belize. These projects improve freshwater quality and biodiversity and help alleviate poverty in rural communities.

So far they have helped restore more than five million acres of forest and wetland and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 20 million tonnes.

NativeEnergy

Similarly to TerraCarbon, NativeEnergy works with brands like Ben & Jerrys (who are planting 100,000 trees in Uganda to help their vanilla farmers) and Aveda to neutralise their carbon emissions but also can be used by individuals who want to offset their own personal carbon emissions. Everything is tracked and analysed and Native Energy's projects include clean water initiatives in Ghana and wind farms in America.

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Wind farms have low carbon emissions themselves and help alleviate our dependence on fossil fuels

Carbon Credit Capital

Both people and brands can buy carbon credits from Carbon Credit Capital and they have an easy monthly scheme where as a family you can can offset your average daily emissions. Their internationally accredited projects include equipping people with clean burning stoves in Africa, investing in wind farms and organic waste composting and rainforest conservation.

Atmosfair

German company Atmosfair is a pioneer in the carbon offsetting industry. They're currently financing biogas plant construction in Nepal to help it recover from the terrible earthquake in 2015. It also works with hydro power projects, environmental education and every project is rigorously audited. You can offset air travel, a cruise or any kind of event.

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