Why we don’t offset our emissions

Weber UK

Recently it has become widespread for companies big and small to offset their emissions to advertise their efforts towards becoming carbon neutral. 

This sounds like a cause we should all be a part of, right? Or is it too good to be true? Let’s evaluate what offsetting involves. 

Carbon offsetting is essentially a trading scheme for carbon emissions. If a company buys an offset, they are investing money into an environmental project somewhere around the world, this for example could be tree planting, solar farms, or wind installations. However, it is exceedingly difficult to equate the effectiveness of these projects in terms of CO2 production, and some can even be detrimental to the communities they are supposed to help. 

Do carbon offsets lower our global carbon emissions? 

It might seem that way on paper, but in short, it’s not always the reality. Offsets work as stop-gap or a band-aid that allows the root problem to continue to exist. A factory can still pump out masses of CO2 whilst pushing responsibility onto a wind farm halfway across the globe. This, in turn, stops organisations from looking at their primary CO2 causing factors, whilst on the surface they look green and responsible, it is just ‘’one step forward, one step back. At best they are running in place’’ - Naomi Klein (This Changes Everything). 

What are we doing instead? 

At Weber, we have decided not to look at offsetting and instead focus our efforts where they matter. We are concentrating on our production sites, raw materials, reducing our scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, and are motivated by product innovation. We see this as a more proactive approach than passing on our CO2 challenges to an offsetting organisation, and instead are choosing to face the challenge head-on. 

Offsetting should not replace the hard work of trying to reduce emissions in any way possible.

Click Compare to help you choose the right product for your project, if you need further assistance please email technical@netweber.co.uk