And now we can buy certified “CarbonFree”(TM) products thanks to Carbonfund.org and people can feel they are saving the planet because someone did a limited scope life cycle assessment that looks at greenhouse gas emissions for which offsets have been purchased from Carbonfund. Selling indulgences indeed. What we need is for people and companies to think about what they really need and how to satisfy that need at the least economic, environmental and social cost throughout the life cycle. This just perpetuates the same old products and processes.
Not that I am totally against companies buying and selling offsets. They are a great stepping stone to buy time and resources until significant changes to basic processes can be deployed. But they make sense only if there is a true commitment to change practices.
I call it Life Cycle Thinking.
And BTW – Where is the FTC for all the silly environmental marketing claims being made these days? No product is “carbon free.” This is a totally misleading claim that says there is no carbon associated with the product. If they want to be accurate it ought to be “greenhouse gas emissions offset” product or some such. These “Green,” “Chemical Free,” “Nontoxic,” Eco-friendly” claims drive me crazy!