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Trading Carbon : November 2011
28 INNOVATORS Air travel, however, cannot always be avoided, and several companies, such as The Carbon Neutral Company and Climate Care, offer voluntary carbon offsets to individuals to compensate for emissions generated during flights and other daily activities. One initiative, hoping to accelerate the use of these personal offsets beyond aviation is the Carbon Lottery. "In the retail market, the uptake of voluntary offsets has been poor, and we wanted to launch something fun to attract people," said Gregor Paterson Jones, CEO of South Africa- based asset management group Sterling Waterford Securities, which launched the lotto-based competition in July. Tickets for the lottery are available in the UK for £2 ($3) each with a jackpot of ¤4 million ($5.5 million). Each ticket pays to offset 100 kilogrammes of carbon dioxide, with an individual needing to purchase 106 tickets to cover the 10.6 tonnes, yearly average carbon footprint of people living in the UK, the lottery website says. So far, around 25,000 tickets have been sold for four draws since July raising around £50,000, but Paterson Jones hopes sales will ramp up to around 20,000 tickets per draw after a year. Approximately one-quarter of the funds raised are used to buy the offsets -- which have either Gold Standard or Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS) certification -- through Paterson Jones' Green Offset Company (GOC), which also runs the lottery. About 50--60 per cent of the cash is set aside for prizes, with the remaining 15--25 per cent contributing to company expenses. The prize draws are held at the lottery firm's base in Malta and broadcast via YouTube. Paterson Jones said the internet and social media are becoming increasingly important for innovative schemes looking to mobilise individuals and corporates in the fight against climate change. Another entrepreneur looking to harness the power of social media is Stan Stalnaker, founding director of Hub Culture, November 2011 www.pointcarbon.com ANewWay OfThinking WHILE INTERNATIONAL NEGOTIATIONS ON CLIMATE CHANGE RESEMBLE GROUND HOG DAY, INNOVATORS CONTINUE TO LOOKS AT WAYS TO CUT GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS BY THINKING OUTSIDE OF THE BOX. SUSANNA TWIDALE REPORTS UN talks held in Panama in early October stalled over the usual sticking point of what to do once the Kyoto Protocol's first commitment period expires at the end of 2012 (see pages 20--21). Yet, the seeming lack of a unified will to move forward at the international level has not deterred innovators seeking fresh ways to fight climate change. The aviation industry currently accounts for about 2--3 percent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but, if left unchecked, this figure could rise to 15--20 percent by 2050, according to analysts. One initiative that could help to put the brakes on the industry's spiralling emissions is "chair miles", a concept devised by Nicolas Noakes, business development manager at IT giant Cisco, to reward employees when they find ways to avoid travel. "The idea is that (chair miles) levels out the playing field against huge airlines that have a strong incentive to get people to travel," Noakes said, adding the idea was born out of ways to market Cisco's video-conferencing technology. The company is already benefiting from a move to use its own technology as frequently as possible, rather than hopping on a plane. "The amount we spend annually on aviation has fallen from around $750 million (in 2008) to around $400 million now," Neil Harris, European sustainability manager at Cisco, said. The initiative has also helped to slash the company's scope three -- or indirect -- emissions from business-related air travel by 45 percent on 2007 levels, according to its 2010 corporate and social responsibility report. It did not reveal the exact emission figures. In the retail market, the uptake of voluntary offsets is poor Gregor Paterson Jones, Sterling Waterford Securities Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture: Linking EUAs and Facebook
December - January 2011