Do your best, offset the rest?
After doing everything else to reduce carbon emissions, one way for companies and individuals to take responsibility for whatever emissions remain is carbon offsetting. Suston meets with Myclimate’s Marketing Manager Kai Landwehr to learn more.
Myclimate helps several outdoor brands looking to meet their emissions goals. But there still seems to be a fair amount of confusion surrounding carbon offsetting. Can you explain what Myclimate does?
We are a partner for climate protection and sustainability for private individuals as well as for companies of any scale. With our work, we want to contribute to a low-carbon economy – to enable our partners to do their best and offset the rest. That said, most people know Myclimate as a provider for voluntary CO2 offsetting.
Offsetting is about taking responsibility – the polluters pay principle – rather than about buying free of “sins.” Our approach is a pragmatic one: climate protection must not fail because of a tedi- ous and confusing process, which unfortunately is still far too often the case today.
Can you tell a bit about how the process works?
First off, you can only manage what you have measured. So, each commitment to climate pro- tection begins with a calculation. Having calculated CO2 emissions related to a product, an event, a flight or even a whole company, we put a price tag to this result. This price corresponds to the costs of reducing exactly the same amount of CO2 elsewhere with full traceability.
To this end, we offer around 100 projects, certified and externally monitored, with which emissions can then be offset. Some examples include micro biogas plants, solar home systems, efficient cooking stoves, community reforestation projects etc.
How does offsetting relate to the Paris Agreement’s 1.5–2°C goal?
As a society, we will only achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement if we make use of all the possi- bilities available to us. Time is a decisive factor. We firmly believe that we will achieve a decarbonized economy through the principle of “avoid, reduce and compensate.” Yet as long as our economy, our mobility, our consumption and our lifestyles are still heavily dependent on fossil fuels, offsetting is a very effective “bridge technology.”