Taking a portfolio approach

We only select carbon offsets from credible schemes such as Gold Standard and VCS.

Our portfolio approach uses a number of initiatives such as clean cookstoves, clean water, biogas, and renewables and forestry. This mitigates the risk of price increases, reputation and lack of availability. These schemes also contribute a wider socio-economic benefit to local communities including employment, health improvements, biodiversity and many other factors that contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

What happens behind the scenes?

Carbon offsetting is a highly regulated and robust industry. To generate and sell carbon credits, project developers must show that the reductions would not have happened without their project, with any claims verified by two independent parties. When you offset, carbon credits are ‘retired’ on a public registry, meaning they cannot be used more than once.

Academic Rigour

Our scientists work to the highest international standards: ISO14044 (Lifecycle assessment); GHG Protocol, PAS 2050 and ISO14064/67 (Greenhouse gases); PAS2060 (Carbon neutral); Gold Standard & VCS (Carbon offsets).

What’s the difference between carbon neutral, climate positive and net zero?

Carbon neutral
Carbon neutral means the greenhouse gases emitted by an activity (e.g. making a product) are cancelled out by the removal of an equal amount of greenhouse gases by something else as part of a verified scheme (such as clean cookstoves, clean water, biogas, renewables and forestry).

Climate positive
Climate positive goes further than carbon neutral and it means the removal or offsetting of more greenhouse gases from the atmosphere than are emitted by an activity in the first place. There is no recognised definition, but the trend is towards double.

Net zero
Net zero also encompasses other greenhouse gases such as methane, but first requires that all greenhouse gases are reduced in line with a pathway that limits global warming to 1.5°C. The impact of any remaining greenhouse gases are then balanced by offsetting.

Planting trees and protecting existing forests

If you want to do more than just offset carbon, you should consider tree planting and land conservation projects as ‘buddy’ projects.

While these often don’t count towards carbon neutral or net zero according to current standards they do round off the environmental story, often with a specific and localised theme.

What is the debate?

  • A tree planted today won’t remove carbon from the atmosphere for several decades.
  • There is still scientific debate as to whether avoided deforestation is truly removing carbon from the atmosphere.

These are therefore good options for a climate positive pledge, provided that the primary offset has been completed with a scheme where there is proof that sufficient carbon has already been removed.