Carbon offsetting gives social benefits worth US $664 per tonne: study

Businesses that are voluntarily offsetting their emissions are having a bigger impact on society than perceived, says study by Imperial College London

By Vijeta Rattani
Published: Monday 08 September 2014

Representative image from Pixabay

A new research has brought out more social significance of business establishments in reducing emissions other than combating climate change.
The study, titled Unlocking the hidden value of carbon offsetting, has explored the impact of carbon reduction in communities where projects aimed at voluntary reduction take place. This impact is evaluated by taking into account the environment and social aspects like poverty alleviation, infrastructure development, health etc. The study finds that the total value of carbon offsetting is pegged at US $ 664 per ton of carbon reduced. This means reducing one tonne of carbon yields environment and social benefits to the tune of US $ 664.

The research carried out by the Imperial College London, in partnership with the International Carbon Reduction and Offsetting Alliance (ICROA), is novel in a way that it looks into the community benefits of carbon-offsetting, an area that has been previously ignored. It also points at the greater role of businesses on society. “Businesses that are voluntarily cutting their emissions are having a bigger impact on society than previously thought”, substantiates the report.

In addition, the research demonstrates that such carbon offset programmes improve the brand image of the corporation and increases its bankability. It “delivers numerous business objectives, such as employee engagement and resource efficiency savings, and makes a positive contribution to local communities in addition to reducing emissions”, the report remarks.

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