Reduce what you can. Offset what you can’t

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The team at The Channel Islands Co-operative Society explains why the company has partnered with ESI Monitor to help Islanders tackle their carbon footprint

DO you know the size of your carbon footprint?

In recent years, a greater focus has been placed on the environmental impact we have on our planet.

As recently as 25 years ago, terms such as ‘carbon neutral’, ‘offsetting’, and ‘carbon footprints’ were virtually unheard of to the general public. Nowadays, thanks to public figures such as Sir David Attenborough and Greta Thunberg, the spotlight has been brought onto climate issues, and such phrases are now commonplace in day-to-day conversations.

It might be easy to be complacent about the worldwide issue of global warming from our small island of Jersey. But the reality is that we can all play a part in reducing the effects of human beings on our planet and help towards a greener future. All it takes is a small commitment from each of us to help make a world of difference.

So, what can you do to reduce your carbon footprint?

Get to know your carbon footprint

The best way to know how to reduce your carbon footprint is firstly to know how much carbon you contribute. Everyday travel can be a large contributor to the size of your carbon footprint, as well as other factors necessary to our daily lifestyles including home heating and electricity usage. But calculating your carbon footprint is easier than you may think.

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society has long been a supporter of environmental and eco-friendly initiatives in the Channel Islands. It is why your society is delighted to team up with Guernsey-based environmental standards company, ESI Monitor, as they launch a new carbon-offset scheme for islanders. Carbon Offset+ allows islanders in Jersey and Guernsey to calculate and then offset carbon emissions from their vehicles through ESI Monitor’s online carbon calculator.

In a matter of minutes, you can see how much CO2e was produced by your travel during the last year, and then have the option to pay a charge which is spent equally on accredited and certified international carbon offset projects, and local green projects in the Channel Islands.

Mark Cox, chief executive of The Channel Islands Co-operative Society, said: ‘As a responsible retailer, we are committed to doing as much as we can to lessen our impact on the environment.

‘We can all play our part in reducing our carbon emissions and offsetting what we cannot reduce which is why we are proud to be sponsors of ESI’s Carbon Offset + scheme. This scheme is a great tool in understanding the impact we have on our environment and in becoming more mindful of the simple changes we can all make.

‘What’s more, the cost of offsetting carbon funds local environmental projects here in Jersey, helping us to make a real difference within our community.’

Reduce what you can. Offset what you can’t.

The scheme by ESI Monitor encourages islanders to evaluate the impact their actions have on the environment and inspires them to reduce their carbon footprint as much as they can in daily life.

‘Urgent action is needed to mitigate climate change and its impacts,’ said ESI Monitor carbon footprint analyst Sylvie Laine.

‘In terms of our own emissions, the most important thing any one of us can do is reduce what we can and offset what we can’t.’

The Carbon Offset + scheme allows islanders to do just that. The offset portion of the charge goes towards projects that absorb CO2e or prevent CO2e from being produced in the future. 80% of the projects will be certified by organisations such as the WWF Gold Standard, and 20% will be non-certified projects that deserve support.

The remainder of the charge will be used to support local eco projects, which means that Islanders who offset their emissions are also supporting environmental conservation and restoration projects right here in Jersey.

Above all, it is hoped that the scheme will make Islanders stop and think of actions they can take to reduce their carbon emissions and therefore lessen their charge for carbon offset. It may be that Islanders choose to cycle, walk or take the bus as an alternative to car or motorbike journeys. It all contributes to a more sustainable lifestyle and playing a small but vital part in reducing global carbon emissions.

Visit esimonitor.org/carbon-offset-plus/ today to begin offsetting your carbon emissions and help towards a cleaner and greener island for all.

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