FAQ

Yes, we definitely think that you can call yourself climate neutral!

If you want to make it a little more complicated, for companies there are standards that regulate the requirements for what is considered being climate-neutral (PAS 2060 and ISO 14021), but in the case of individuals, there are no similar standards that we know of. This means that there may be different opinions of what it takes for a person to be considered climate neutral.


In theory climate neutrality is when the difference between the emissions you cause and the emissions that you prevent from reaching the atmosphere is zero. The challenge with this is partly to calculate the exact carbon footprint for an individual, and also to find ways to reliably prevent emissions from reaching the atmosphere or remove emissions from the atmosphere.

When it comes to measuring your own climate footprint, there are very advanced methods to do this. We have chosen a simple estimate to make it as easy as possible for you to start doing something about climate change without having to spend a lot of time in carbon dioxide calculators where you need to enter exact air mileage, kWh consumption etc.

There are many advanced calculators freely available on the internet that provide more accurate estimates such as http://footprint.wwf.org.uk and http://www.carbonfootprint.com/calculator.aspx. What all calculators have in common is that they are based on estimates and generalizations, which in turn means that the value you get is approximate. For example, the calculators does not take into account if you have built a new house last year and thus caused large emissions in the form of building materials, or if you only use very fuel efficient airplanes when you fly. The calculators also do not take into account the exact emissions caused by the manufacture of the batteries for your electric car nor if your car has been bought new or second hand, if you charge it with renewable energy at home and with fossil based energy at work. The reason is that such a calculator would be extremely complex and time consuming to use - and yet not perfect.

So are there measurable and good ways to remove emissions from the atmosphere or measurable and good ways to prevent emissions to be released in the atmosphere? Yes there are! We have chosen to invest in CDM and Gold Standard-certified climate projects, and you can read more om how that works in the answer to the question Does climate offsetting really make a difference?.

Is it then impossible to consider one self as climate neutral since you cannot calculate your exact carbon footprint? Well, we believe it’s still possible. To ensure that our users are climate neutral, as far as we can, our profiles are designed to compensate for more than twice as much as the overall impact of your lifestyle while doing everything we can to ensure the reliability of the projects. This way there is a buffer that compensates for miscalculations of your emissions and for risks in the projects we invest in. With a two-fold compensation, we should be on the safe side, and most likely even be climate-positive.

So to answer the question again, yes, we definitely think that you can call yourself climate neutral!


Yes. If you, with money contributions, remove as much emissions from the atmosphere as you cause - you can call yourself climate neutral. It might sound provoking and unfair that you can just pay money to get to call yourself climate neutral, but the good news is that it's possible to achieve great climate benefits with relatively small amounts of money. Enough benefits that most people easily can reduce emissions - through climate projects in developing countries - more than the emissions they cause by their own lifestyle.

But at the same time, it's not enough to help others reduce their emissions if we are to succeed in stopping climate change. We must simultaneously also reduce our own emissions. Therefore we at GoClimateNeutral.org see the investment in climate projects only as a first step in the right direction. But after that step has been taken we must also reduce our own emissions.

Unfortunately it's often rather hard for most people to reduce their climate footprint since a change in lifestyle often is needed - for instance if you are to sell your car or stop flying. And big changes in habits and lifestyle has proven very hard for us humans to do. Therefore we have chosen to make it simple for people to contribute to slow down climate change by investing in climate projects. When this first step is taken we want to inspire all our users to gradually slow down their own climate footprint.

The approach of getting people to take a small step first and then making bigger changes is called Foot-in-the-door-technique. You can read more about how it works here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foot-in-the-door_technique

Foot-in-the-door-technique is the reason why we believe in getting as many as possible to take a first step in their climate commitment now, and why we think it needs to be both really simple and a positive experience. It is simply much more likely that people make more and bigger changes in their lifestyle once they have begun to take a step in the right direction.



Carbon Offsetting is a way to take responsibility for the carbon emissions your lifestyle causes. To drive a car, fly and eat meat causes rather high carbon dioxide emissions, that causes climate change - that causes global warming.

When you carbon offset you pay money for the amount of carbon dioxide your lifestyle causes. The money are invested in climate projects that reduce the same amount of carbon dioxide as you have caused - so that the sum of the emissions is zero or less. You can reduce emissions either by helping somebody else lower their emissions or by removing emissions from the atmosphere.

Carbon offsetting is often made possible by climate projects in developing countries - for instance energy efficiency projects or wind or solar plants.

To be on the safe side that you actually achieve climate benefit when you carbon offset - the climate projects should be reliably certified. The most reliable projects are both UN and Gold Standard-certified (that WWF and Greenpeace is behind among others).

At GoClimateNeutral.org we help you offset your emissions that your lifestyle causes through projects that are both UN and Gold Standard-certified.


Yes, carbon offsetting works. But in order to make a real, verified and lasting difference it's important to choose the climate projects you offset through with care.

So, how can you be sure that the money we invest actually contributes to real climate benefit? Well, there are several different organisation that approves and certifies climate projects to ensure this. The largest standards are CDM (which the UN is behind), Gold Standard (which Greenpeace and WWF among others are behind), Plan Vivio, VCS and Fair Trade. Emissions trading also used to be a way to carbon offset, but is no longer an effective way to achieve real and lasting climate benefit.

We at GoClimateNeutral has gone from doing carbon offseting in UN-certified projects (CDM) to investing in projects that are both UN-certified and also certified by Gold Standard Foundation. These projects are more expensive, but keeps a higher quality and are more audited by independent third parties than the projects that are only UN-certified. You can read more about Gold Standard here: https://www.goldstandard.org/

It is also important to invest in projects that are already completed. If the projects are completed, third parties can verify the actual climate benefit achieved - unlike in projects where climate benefits are just something that someone hopes to achieve in the future.

By investing in CDM- and Gold Standard-certified projects - and also only invest in projects that are already completed and verified - you can be sure that your money has contributed to real climate benefit - and that your carbon offsetting works.


There are two main reasons why we think you should use GoClimateNeutral.org. Firstly, we can help you do as much good for the climate as possible with your money. The carbon offset market is unfortunately rather complex and not very easy to get an overview of. There are different standards for climate projects, completely different types of projects and the price per ton - which is not always easy to find - can vary a lot between different projects.

Finding your way around the projects and understanding where your money does as much good for the climate as possible is hard, and this is where we can help. Doing this together we can also get better prices - since the price also varies a lot depending on the volume you want to offset.

Secondly, there is no other service that we know, which calculates what to offset for your lifestyle, and makes it easy for you to offset it by deducting money from your account every month instead of making you enter and offset everything manually.

In addition, it's fun to do good things together and see how much we can achieve if we act on climate together. And with a little luck, your participation can also bring more people joining the fight against climate change, and the more we are, the bigger the chance that we can do a big difference together.


The short answer is yes. It is more reliable and therefore better to not release anything at all than to emit and then offset for what you emitted. At GoClimateNeutral.org, carbon offseting is used as a way to get as many people as possible to take a first step in the fight against climate change, but we do not suggest it's enough in the long term or more important. However, it is an important first step that is easy for many people to take.

At the same time it is obviously better to release 1 ton of CO2 and offset 2 tonnes of CO2 - and thus have the net effect of preventing 1 ton of CO2 to be released in the atmosphere - than not emit nor offset anything.

The very best is of course to not put reducing emssions and helping others reducing their emissions by carbon offsetting - against eachother, but to reduce your own emissions as much as you can and help others reducing theirs by investing in climate projects at the same time.

No, you can’t. We consider carbon offsetting a first step - a way to start doing something against climate change. It has been proven that when looking at companies that offset their carbon footprint, they reduce their emissions more than those that do not offset.

'The typical offset buyer directly slashed almost 17% of their scope 1 emissions while the typical non-offset buyer reduced scope 1 emissions by less than 5%.' - http://moderncms.ecosystemmarketplace.com/repository/moderncms_documents/buyers_report_-_032015.pdf

We believe that this also applies to individuals. We believe that those who sign up for GoClimateNeutral.org and pay to remove emissions from the atmosphere every month will also reduce their emissions caused by their way of living more than if they did not register at all.

An offsetting project reduces emissions from reaching the atmosphere with the money invested in it. For example, it can be a wind turbine park that generates renewable energy to avoid using fossil based electricity, distributing effective stoves so that less trees needs to be chopped down and burned, or it can be a project that replaces a whole fleet of buses on diesel to electricity.


To ensure that the invested money really offsets emissions, there are different standards - such as CDM, Gold Standard, Plan Vivo, VCS and Fair Trade - that certifies projects based on a number of different parameters.

Even though most of the projects out there are really excellent, some projects and standards have repeatedly failed to keep what they promise, and in some cases even had negative effects for local people and for the environment where the project was carried out.

Therefore, it is clear to us at GoClimateNeutral.org that we cannot choose any project to invest in in order to become climate neutral. We therefore only invest in the most credible and thoroughly reviewed projects, projects that are both CDM certified (that the UN is behing) and in addition have the Gold Standard certification (which WWF and Greenpeace among others are behind). When you invest in these projects, you have the UN's all Member States and about 90 environmental organizations behind you. In addition, third parties verifies all of these projects, including TÜV and DNV, and all their protocols are public and follow the projects throughout the project lifespan.         

In addition to choosing thoroughly third-party reviewed projects, which is CDM and Gold Standard certified, we also offset for double the calculated emissions - to be on the safe side if something would go wrong with the climate projects we invest in. We also spread investments in various climate projects to further increase the sureness that the money achieve as much good as possible.


Not that much money is needed in order to achieve a big climate benefit in developing countries. Big climate projects can get started and implemented by just adding a small amount of money to them.

An example, a village in vietnam can build a hydro power plant that costs 10,1 million USD. This is unfortunately more expensive than just buying electricity from coal power plants which would cost 10 milliun USD. Unfortunately the village is very poor and the hydro power plant wont be built. But by adding 0.1 million USD, you can get the calculation to add up and the project can be build - clean hydro power will replace power from the coal power plant! So relatively small amounts of money - 0.1 million USD in this case - can make a huge environment impact! The example is somewhat simplified of course, but hopefully illustrates the principle.

The economical mechanism is originated from the UN and the Kyoto-protocol, where CDM-projects and CER-credits as they are called were initatied. To futher strengthen the quality on the social aspects of the CDM-projects pretty soon Gold Standard Foundation was founded by WWF and Greenpeace among others.

At GoClimateNeutral.org we try to find the most price effective CDM and Gold Standard certified projects for you, so that your money can do as much impact for the climate as possible.


No, quite the opposite actually! We believe that offsetting is an excellent fist step that many can take to help increase the speed of transitioning to a more sustainable society.

Behavioral research has shown that if people can take a first step in the right direction, for example for the climate through climate offsetting, it is much more likely that those people will take more and bigger steps in the same direction later. This is called foot-in-the-door technique and is a strong contributory reason for why we have made it as simple as possible to get started to do something positive for the climate. We have seen many examples of this and are convinced that the vast majority of those who sign up for the service also want to take more steps to help speed up the transition to a sustainable society even more.

Yes, it has been found that companies that offset for their carbon footprint also reduce their emissions. We believe that offsetting can have the same effect on individuals - that individuals who offset also reduce their carbon footprint in the long term due to changed habits. Read more in this report on offsetting companies:

Read more in this report on offsetting companies:
“ The typical offset buyer directly slashed almost 17% of their scope 1 emissions while the typical non-offset buyer reduced scope 1 emissions by less than 5%.” - http://moderncms.ecosystemmarketplace.com/repository/moderncms_documents/buyers_report_-_032015.pdf

No. CO2 is critical for any form of life on Earth. But when we emit millions of tonnes of CO2 from the ground on a daily basis and release it into the atmosphere it raises the temperature on Earth as a consequence. It will in turn lead to drought, water shortage, starvation and possibly war. The Nature Conservation Association in Sweden believes there will be 200 million climate refugees in 2050.

We want to do everything we can to slow down climate change as much as possible and do not have any plans to pick out any profit. However, if in the future we can increase the chance of slowing down climate change even more by setting up profit goals, then we will do that. Stopping climate change is more important than anything else for us.

So far, we have spent thousands of hours without payment and profit on this project, but we hope to pay salaries in the future to make the project more long-term and thus make even more good for the planet.

If, at any time, we would like to pay a salary or profit, we will be 100% transparent with it. You can already follow all the financial details of our business here: https://en.goclimateneutral.org/100_percent_transparency

Yes. And we will then invite you all for a glas of champagne!

The calculation of a carbon footprint is very complicated and can never be perfect. It doesn't matter how detailed you do your calculation, you will always need to make a lot of assumptions. Instead of using a complicated calculation we base our model on the three lifestyle choices that effect your footprint the most; what you eat, what you drive and how much you fly. To be on the safe side we offset for twice as much as we estimate that your lifestyle cause. The amount of corbon in the different lifestyle choices we base on the excellent calculators from myclimate.com and carbonstory.org. If you want a more exact amount of your carbon footprint there are lots of very good calculators out there.

We believe in full transparency in everything we do. All project that we invest in are shown on the first page when you log in to your account. You can also read about them on our blog under the category investment.

You can easily cancel your subscription by choosing 'cancel climate plan' on the payment settings page here: https://en.goclimateneutral.org/users/edit/payment

We are using Stripe (https://stripe.com/) as our payments provider. Stripe is one of the biggest payment providers online. All card details are completely handled by them - completely encrypted of course. Card details never go by our own servers, they are handled directly by Stripe.

---

About us | Contact us | Press | FAQ | Our Climate Investments | 100% transparency

Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Blog

---

© 2018 GoClimateNeutral.org