Be Less Bad - TerraPass

( December 31st, 2007 )

be nice to this

We’re all bad for the environment. We know this, and while a great many of us acknowledge this reality, the norm is still inaction. Sometimes, outside of knowing what NOT to do (like driving a car) it is hard to understand more proactive things that you CAN do to lessen your personal impact. My family did the Secret Santa thing this year and my father gave my wife the coolest gift I have yet seen. He took action and purchased for her car for the next year from . I had read about TerraPass previously at in an interview with one of the founders. Both my wife and I agreed that this was an exceptionally creative and thoughtful gift. It motivated both of us to learn more.

TerraPass is the brainchild of at the University of Pennsylvania. Along with 41 of his students, Karl launched TerraPass in October, 2004 as a way to help everyday people reduce their climate impact. Within its first year, TerraPass registered over 2,400 members, reduced 36 million pounds of CO2, and earned countless national press and blog articles. To date those numbers are more in the range of 75,000 members with CO2 reduction now nearly 703 million pounds.

The TerraPass website offers a nifty for tabulating the carbon footprint of your driving, air travel, home ownership, dorm room… even your wedding. Using the calculator, you can purchase carbon offsets to balance your lifestyle and work towards the ultimate goal of living carbon neutral. We are going to purchase offsets for my car as well (about $33/year), as well as offsetting the carbon footprint of our home (about $195/year). While this is a small thing in the greater scheme of global warming and climate change, it is very definitely a step in the right direction and is important in terms of making us aware as much as offering the opportunity to purchase carbon offsets.

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