I Blew Some $$ on “Carbon Credits”

I bought myself some carbon credits for the first time today. Credits for 1 month cost $14.97.

Here’s why:

Curiosity!
I wanted to see how it works. Kinda like when I tracked my calorie intake as part of Stanford’s 6 month gut-microbiome study (aka “swab your poop with this q-tip), and learned all about the ingredients and calories of what I ate.

Peer Pressure!
I hear lots about carbon credits but not much about individual people actually buying them. Then last week my friend Dan Walsh bought enough credits to offset his carbon dioxide for the entire year! Woa!! Now I had to try it myself.

Guilt? Nah. I believe climate change is the biggest financial opportunity civilization has ever seen. $14.97 is just table stakes. My impression is lots of other people do feel guilty, so that’s why I ask. Perhaps once I start buying credits my guilt will emerge :O

It’s EASY to buy carbon credits

Buying credits took 5 minutes. I went to http://terrapass.com, and clicked “Carbon Offsets”.

How much to buy? The Terrapass website says average carbon dioxide emissions are 3,000 pounds per month. So to start, I went with the average.

WTF is a “carbon credit”?

Did I flush my money down the drain on some eco-scam?

I’m learning as I go. From the Terrapass site, my impression is my money went towards carbon dioxide credits generated from windmills or planting trees or something. So I basically paid to support a windmill or forest.

From Terrapass.com: TerraPass carbon offsets support emission reduction projects in communities around the United States. Every 1,000lbs you purchase destroys greenhouse gases equivalent to 1,000lbs of carbon dioxide, or burning 51 gallons of gasoline!

Have you bought carbon credits?

To me, buying carbon credits is like taking a cheap course on environmental science. I learned a lot about carbon credits quickly, came up with questions, and found answers. I touched on peer pressure, curiosity, and guilt along the way. It’s a fast and cheap way to learn by doing.

Carbon credits get a lot of talk and discussion in climate conversations. Who is following through with their wallet and time, even if it’s just to experiment? Have you? Will you?

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Are you a junior planetary engineer, or want to be? I want to hear from you. Email me at tito@impossiblelabs.io with the subject "planetary engineer". This blog is my version of Professor X's Cerebro: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFuyU8Buess

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