We are going net zero – Offsetting – but the right way!

27. February 2023

#climateneutral, #CO2eq-Compensation, #Greenwashing #Offsetting.

Recently, the magazines "Die Zeit" and "The Guardian" reported on a serious problem in the trading of CO2eq certificates. (see https://lnkd.in/eyTHiakH)

The itself renowned organisation "VERRA" is confronted with massive criticism of #greenwashing. This raises the question more topical than ever: Which providers of offsets can be trusted? Which certificates are actually used to offset CO2eq.?

VERRA has rejected the allegations as "manifestly unreliable" due to "methodological flaws". How big the scandal about millions of allegedly worthless CO2eq certificates sold, will actually be, remains to be seen. However, the worldwide discussion about offsetting, CO2eq compensation projects, CO2eq certificates and greenwashing also has a good side: awareness of the issue and thus the requirements for quality criteria and the control of "high-quality" compensation projects are increasing.

Biochar has been produced as a product in technical pyrolysis plants for quite some time, but only now its extremely important role in the fight against climate change is being properly appreciated. We at Syncraft know about the vital importance of "valuable" CO2eq compensation and actual climate neutrality:

With a climate-positive #Rückwärtskraftwerk from Syncraft, additional valuable biochar is produced during the production of heat and electricity. As Biochar actively stores CO2eq from the atmosphere, it serves to either actively reduce one's own CO2eq footprint (see in detail our series - Going Net Zero) or to "compensate" the footprint of others in the form of saleable certificates. In this process, the biochar is monitored from production through its respective use to the retirement of the certificate using block chain technology. (see our partner Carbon Futures)

Syncraft's reverse power plants make an important contribution to this: As reported, we were able to actively bind around 50,000 tons of CO2eq from the atmosphere in the form of biochar with our customers in 2022. Seems like a drop in the bucket, but every drop of "real" CO2eq compensation counts!

That's important because the challenge is daunting: to avoid the worst effects of climate change, we need to reduce global annual CO2eq emissions from about 35 gigatons per year starting in 2020 to net zero by 2050.

Those who emit CO2eq can compensate for their "climate sins" by buying CO2eq certificates, the so-called "offsetting". The money then flows into projects in which CO2eq is offset - such as the reforestation of forests, the renaturation of soils or the protection of oceans (the three largest natural and thus most important carbon absorbers from the atmosphere). Companies wash their hands of with "offsetting" and often claim that their production, products, services or even the entire company are "climate neutral". However, if their money flows into too "cheap" or generally "worthless" offset projects, it is - whether knowingly or not - #greenwashing. In other words, claiming to be "climate neutral", "net-zero" or "CO2eq neutral", although one's own CO2eq footprint is significantly larger than is actually been compensated.

#reversepowerplant #climatepositive #TeamSynCraft