Buying Carbon Credits - A blog by JD Carr

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Buying Carbon Credits - A blog by JD Carr

JD Carr, CGB - is a serial entrepreneur and consultant with over 14 years experience building Internet and digital media businesses. JD is a Certified Green Broker® and specializes in commercial building sustainability and finance with
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The 3BL Media blog roll is a select list of the most influential, respected, and authoritative voices in corporate social responsibility. Compiled from the 3BL Media staff’s extensive contacts with longtime CSR commentators, these blogger soffer relevant news, opinions, and ideas about all things CSR in one convenient place.    

Tuesday, October 27, 2009 - 11:51am


Picture a greenhouse on a sunny day.  The sun’s rays pass through the panes of glass in the ceiling, flooding the greenhouse with light.  Those same panes of glass act as insulation, trapping the heated air within the greenhouse’s walls.  On a summer’s day, a greenhouse can quickly become hot, humid, and uncomfortable.

Emissions from cars, planes, and power plants are responsible for a phenomenon known as the greenhouse effect.  Carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, methane, and other gases (commonly known as greenhouse gases, or GHG) combine in the atmosphere.  This mixture of gases acts like the panes of glass in a greenhouse.  Sunlight passes straight through, but the greenhouse gases trap the thermal energy released from the earth.  Heat continually builds, increasing the temperature on the earth’s surface and starting a chain reaction known as global warming.  On a warmer planet, ocean temperatures increase, sea levels rise, and storm systems intensify.

The only way to prevent global warming is to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere.  This is a hard task; almost every daily activity creates pollution.  For every 1,900 miles you drive, you release one ton of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.  You release half a ton of CO2 by running your household for one month.  According to Clean Air-Cool Planet, a leading nonprofit environmental group, the average US citizen releases 21 tons of carbon emissions into the atmosphere every year.  Unless you live as the pilgrims did, you are responsible for some of the GHG emissions floating around the earth’s atmosphere.  To lessen your burden on the planet, consider purchasing carbon offsets.

Carbon offsets are credits sold by companies actively reducing the amount of GHG emissions released into the atmosphere.  These companies build wind farms, geothermal plants, and carbon sequestration plants to both reduce GHG emissions in the atmosphere and prevent the release of GHG emissions into the atmosphere.  Consumers buy carbon offsets by the ton from online retailers or international brokers.  For every one ton credit they purchase, they offset their own carbon emissions by one ton.

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