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Old 12-17-2006, 06:25 AM   #1
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Need a gift idea? Carbon-Neutrality.


WHAT'S THE PERFECT GIFT for the environmentally conscious man who has everything? This holiday season there's a new must-have: carbon neutrality. In the past few years, a cottage industry has grown up around the sale of so-called "carbon offsets." Concerned consumers, or their secret Santas, can pay to have their greenhouse gas emissions -- from driving, plane travel, home heating, even beef-eating (cattle ranching is the among world's leading sources of greenhouse gases) -- canceled out by a corresponding emissions reduction elsewhere.


The number of high-visibility clients, both individual and institutional, is certainly growing. HSBC, Europe's largest bank, recently announced it would offset all of its business travel. The Dave Matthews Band has retroactively offset its travel and accommodations for every show it's ever played. Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth," both the book and the movie, were proclaimed carbon neutral, as was the 2006 World Cup. Famously green companies like Stonyfield Farm and Ben & Jerry's are offsetting their emissions, as well -- the energy bar manufacturer Clif Bar, by its own calculations, offsets more than it emits.
Cool. But I do see both sides of this concern:

Like those classifications, though, carbon neutrality has invited skepticism, from environmentalists concerned about the message it sends -- for a few dollars, are we just giving people license to pollute? -- and from economists who doubt it really works.

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Old 12-17-2006, 03:03 PM   #2
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I just offset my friend's car and my dad's business travel for the past year! I know they'll both be happy to see that such a thing can be done...and if I'm gonna spend the money I might as well do something that at least is directed towards doing some good.

Thanks for pointing this out V- tek!

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Old 12-18-2006, 12:11 PM   #3
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I think if implemented well it's a really cool idea. I'm glad you were able to use it!
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Old 12-18-2006, 12:42 PM   #4
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The biggest piece of feel good wank the green movement has produced yet, but I love it that we live in a world where such a product can be bought.
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