Why Offsets Must Return to the Climate Radar

Carbon offsets – a technique for demonstrating that your greenhouse gas emissions have real costs – are strangely absent from most people’s sense of their climate obligations. While purists seem to take great pleasure in pointing out that carbon offsets are not a perfect solution for greenhouse gas emissions, the result has been that very few people now feel any moral pressure to offset.  This needs to be turned around.

The article linked here (recently printed in Ensia) gives an environmental ethicist’s perspective on offsetting personal air travel.  They may not be the perfect solution, but offsets are important. If you are flying, you should be buying.

“You desperately want to book that flight for the family wedding. But the frightening Fourth National Climate Assessment released by the U.S. Global Change Research Program in November has flipped on the guilt switch for you. Climate change used to be a faint background murmur you could ignore when there were fun places to go. But November’s report is clear: It’s here, and it’s bad…..” (continue reading)


jason leung


Photo by Jason Leung via Unsplash

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