What is the Carbon Converter?
The Carbon Converter is a free calculator which quantifies and offsets transport-related greenhouse gas emissions. The Carbon Converter has been developed with the aim of helping users neutralize their impact on the environment.
What are greenhouses gases?
Greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere and warm the planet. Greenhouse gases emitted by our industrial activities and lifestyle choices are causing climate change. The main gases responsible for the greenhouse effect include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases.
Where do transportation emissions come from?
Transportation emissions occur when fossil fuels are burned in the engines of vehicles, ships, planes and other modes of transportation. The majority of greenhouse gases emitted are carbon dioxide, with small quantities of methane and nitrous oxide. The IPCC estimates that about 14% of all greenhouse gases are caused by transportation.
What is offsetting?
A carbon offset reduces emissions from the atmosphere in order to compensate for emissions made elsewhere. The emissions that may be reduced include carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.
How does the Carbon Converter offset my emissions?
The Carbon Converter offsets your greenhouse gas emissions by planting trees on your behalf. These trees absorb carbon dioxide over their lifetime which neutralises the emissions caused by your transport trips thus offsetting the emissions.
Why do trees absorb carbon dioxide?
Trees perform photosynthesis which is a process through which they create food for itself. During photosynthesis, trees absorb carbon dioxide and store the carbon in the wood throughout its lifetime. In addition, trees also release the much needed oxygen that we need to be able to breathe.
How does the Carbon Converter convert the carbon?
The Carbon Converter enables the conversion of the carbon dioxide by changing its location. First it calculates your transportation emissions, next it plants trees on your behalf, the trees then displace the carbon dioxide by absorbing it from the atmosphere into their trunks, branches and roots.
What are the type of transportation emissions calculated?
The Carbon Converter currently calculates transport emissions across the following modes of transport: flight, car, bus and rail. You can add multiple modes of transport, trips and passengers. Hence you can calculate your entire family’s emissions over a certain period of time or emissions from a specific trip that you might have taken along with friends, family or colleagues.
How are my emissions calculated?
The Carbon Converter uses conversion factors derived from global sources, multiplies it with the distance travelled by the particular mode of transport, and adds those values to get total emissions associated with the entire trip.
How is the distance calculated for all the modes of transport?
For air travel, aerial distance is calculated between origin and destination points. Emission factors used for calculating emissions, is based on the aerial distance. For all other modes (car, bus, train), road distance is used. Actual route taken may vary slightly. Hence actual emissions may be higher or lower than the value calculated.
How accurate are the emission values calculated by the Carbon Converter?
The conversion factors used in the calculator come from a variety of sources, both national and global. Actual values may vary slightly. The website is intended to provide information and guidance only.
What if I have a more fuel-efficient car? How do my emissions change?
Emissions are calculated based on globally accepted emission factors. The emission factor used is based on fuel consumption of a premium gasoline sedan with more than 2000cc engine. Your actual emissions may vary based on the type of car you drive, its age and the total occupancy. For further queries, feel free to drop us a mail, we will be happy to assist you.
It takes 5 trees to offset my emissions from a flight from Delhi to Mumbai. Does it mean I should plant 5 trees every time I take a flight from Delhi to Mumbai?
Yes, flights account for highest amount of emissions. Emissions associated with one passenger travelling for almost 2 hours, take 5 trees to offset in their entire lifetime! This is why making correct lifestyle choices is important. You can plant trees yourself, or Auroville Forest Group can do it for you.
How can I reduce my carbon emissions?
Certain lifestyle choices help you reduce your carbon emissions. For example, choosing a low carbon mode of transport over a carbon intensive mode of transport can help you reduce your carbon footprint. Flights contribute to highest amount of carbon emissions, whereas trains generate lowest carbon emissions, within all the four modes of transport. Choosing train over flight for your travel requirements can drastically reduce your travel related carbon footprint.
What if I want to calculate emissions from other sources? Or for my company?
If you want to calculate your emissions from other sources or for your company or an event, please feel free to write to us on email@example.com and we will be happy guide you.
How do I know the offset is really happening?
The Carbon Converter team works with the Forest Group to document the planting of every tree and we will communicate the tree planting efforts with you annually.