Friday, March 02, 2007

Carbon Offsets

If you've been reading recently about Al Gore's carbon gluttony, you probably know that Mr. Gore's response to these accusations is that his life is carbon neutral because he buys carbon offsets. You may be wondering what a carbon offset is. You may even be asking yourself if you could buy some carbon offsets for yourself so that you, too, could be a carbon neutral sort of guy. If so, then you might want to check out DriveNeutral.

Here is what I learned about my family car when I visited DriveNeutral:
This car uses the equivalent of 571 gallons of gasoline each year. This means it produces 11077 pounds of CO2 annually. You can neutralize your 2006 carbon emissions by purchasing a Tier Two DriveNeutral certification for $40.
I think these numbers are kind of interesting. So $40 divided by 571 gallons means I can, presumably, offset my family car carbon footprint for only about 7 cents per gallon. Can that be right? Why are some people talking about increasing the gasoline excise tax by at least 50 cents a gallon because of their global warming concerns? Now, divide 11077 pounds by 571 gallons, and the result is, according to these numbers, that I leave behind me 19.4 pounds of carbon dioxide for every gallon of gasoline I burn in the family car. Hmmmm, I wonder how much a gallon of gasoline weighs? I'm starting to wonder now if maybe I typed my family vehicle incorrectly when I visited Drive Neutral.

No comments: