Carbon offsets are bullshit

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.
~Albert Einstein

You can’t go “carbon neutral.” And I seriously doubt you can go “carbon neutral” for a mere $181.50.

The idea of going “carbon neutral” by buying carbon offsets is akin to paying $200 a year to claim that you don’t beat your child. The damage is still being done, you’re just refusing to take responsibility.

For two, I find their estimates to be low. Not only does my car extrude CO2 when I drive, but it’s very creation resulted in gods know how much more. A chunk of the car is made of plastic (petroleum-derived), to build the car put even more CO2 in the air, and let’s not forget to calculate the CO2 pumped in by obtaining the materials, transporting them, transporting the finished car, transporting it again to the dealership I bought it at, and the drilling, refining, and transport of the gas I use to drive the damn thing.

That’s not even considering one’s consumption habits. That’s just ignored completely. Plastic water bottles, unsustainable agriculture, I could go on forever.

In order to make carbon offsets marketable, they were forced to simplify emissions. In order to simplify emissions, they merely cut out the undesirable calculations (that new TV you just bought, the dinner at Outback Steakhouse last night), opted to only look at the obvious for what calculations they actually did, and patted themselves on the back.

If you think TerraPass is bad, check this one out. At first, okay, it goes by tonnage. But look at the very last one. 25 tons. “25 Tons of CO2 is generated by: 1997’s average US household.” 1997’s average US household. That’s over ten years ago. House sizes increased during that measly ten years, along with the amount of crap we fill our lives with. And the climate-controlled storage unit we use to hold it all.

To base one’s “carbon neutral” status on such simplified and outdated calculations is ridiculous. So is patting oneself on the back for offsetting one’s carbon emissions, but not actually decreasing the amount of carbon emitted.

If being “eco-friendly” means I have to be a blinkered, gullible, trendy yuppie with more money than sense, by all means, count my ass out.

Excuse me, I need to walk to the grocery store.


3 Responses to “Carbon offsets are bullshit”

  1. Amen to this. It’s like people who try to justify being green by buying a Prius instead of taking public transportation (when possible) or buying a used car. Reducing your use is the greenest option of all, when it comes down to it.

  2. Dargon Says:

    I think I can simplify this argument even further. Carbon offsets are bullshit because they don’t do a god damn thing aside from make some guy richer.

  3. […] then he goes and mentions carbon offsets. Fuck you and your carbon offsets. It’s not like they actually do anything. And by the way, his house is 1,500 square […]

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