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Carbon neutrality 

It really gets me that all those big companies claim to be carbon neutral but meanwhile they keep on fueling consumerism which causes huge amounts of emissions through the sales of their products and services.
Put it differently, these companies simply ignore the externalities resulting from their existence and their drive to maximise revenue.

Carbon offsets 

Also, that carbon neutrality is mostly achieved by buying carbon offsets which is at best a very limited resource and at worst a total scam:
* Even if it would work as well as possible, the earth’s land ecosystems can only hold enough additional vegetation to absorb 40 - 100 GtCO₂e from the atmosphere.
* Once this additional growth is achieved (and that takes decades), there is no capacity for additional carbon storage on land.
* The world emits 55 GtCO₂e into the atmosphere per year. So all we can offset is 2 year’s emissions at most.

So even if it would work (but zero evidence so far), offsetting is not a sustainable solution: it is too little and too late because we need to cut emissions dramatically (by 40 GtCO₂e per year) in the next 20 years.

Carbon offsets 

@wim_v12e
Not to mention most of the land those offsets would be planted on is currently used to feed or house over 7 billion people and their livestock, most offset funded trees are not looked after once they're in the ground and die within a year, and 10-20% of the available land will be rendered uninhabitable by climate change before this century is over.
Offsetting is just a Green-themed Ponzi Scheme that will never achieve any positive results.

Carbon offsets 

@LearnTribe I agree. The figures I presented are absolute best case ignoring all that. But it shows that even that most optimistic scenario is still a scam.

Carbon offsets 

@wim_v12e >Once this additional growth is achieved (and that takes decades), there is no capacity for additional carbon storage on land.
Not if you harvest and char that biomass. I ran the numbers for Sweden a while back and came to the conclusion that we could become carbon negative today if we wanted to. There's no money in burying biochar however.
This is part of the reason why I've been saying that the only way out is a global democratic planned economy.

Carbon offsets 

@sa2tms What means "to char"? The only meaning I know is "to turn into charcoal". Is that it?

Carbon offsets 

@wim_v12e Yes. That way it doesn't rot, which would release methane. You get syngas as a byproduct, which can be converted to oil via the Fischer-Tropsch method.
Whether charring or burying the biomass as-is is better in terms of CO2 equivalents is something I don't fully know yet. Main point is that we perform arboriculture to do this, not treating forests as static things but a slower form of agriculture.
Other things to do include rationing meat, rationing fuel, expanding public transport etc..

Carbon offsets 

@sa2tms That is interesting, I didn't know about syngas etc.
I agree with all the rest, and in fact I also think a global planned economy would be ideal.

Carbon offsets 

@wim_v12e it's more or less en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BECCS but just accepting that it's not "economically viable" according to bourgeois economy. it's simply another tool in the 'ol planning box

Carbon neutrality 

@wim_v12e That's a top level summary of "business as usual" for a very long time, right? Avoid liabilities, and keep costs off the books. So many things are off the books now. :(

Carbon neutrality 

@cstanhope Yes of course. But if you search for e.g. Google/MIcrosoft/Apple carbon neutral, almost all you get is uncritical echoing of the publicity put out by those companies. So the public might be forgiven for taking them as examples.

Carbon neutrality 

@wim_v12e Not to mention all the energy they unnecessarily use to decide which ads to show us!

Even ignoring how they're cetainly dealing with blackouts, the reality is there's a limited amount of renewable energy available. Despite how much some techies might wish to deny this fact.

Carbon neutrality 

@alcinnz Quite so. Projections I've read say that even by 2040, we'll still only have about 30% of our electricity from renewables.

Carbon neutrality 

@wim_v12e I hear quite a wide range of predictions there...

Carbon neutrality 

@alcinnz If you have references, please share, I'd like to build up as complete a picture about the different scenarios as possible. My references are in my article: wimvanderbauwhede.github.io/ar

Carbon neutrality 

@wim_v12e To start I'll recommend The Energy Transition Show with Chris Nelder: xenetwork.org/ets

There's a lot there you can dig into more.

Beyond that I might have to ask my climate action colleagues!

Carbon neutrality 

@alcinnz Thanks, I will check that out.

Carbon neutrality 

@wim_v12e I often felt that the only thing that happens about it are PR exercises..

Carbon neutrality 

@famubu A lot of it is just PR.
The datacentres themselves have become a lot greener though. But that is simply because it saves on their energy bills.

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