Apr. 22, 2020

On Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary, Carbon Offsets Create Change

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Today, the world celebrates Earth Day. This year marks the 50th anniversary of a movement that began in the US as a day of national protest, awareness, and commitment to environmental protection. Since 1970, Earth Day has become a global effort to keep air and water clean and protect the planet’s biodiversity.

Now, five decades later, it’s still a worthy cause and one that Flexport is helping to champion through its carbon offset program.

History and Growth

The initial Earth Day, organized by Senator Nelson Gaylord of Wisconsin and spearheaded by then-Harvard student Denis Hayes, saw 20 million Americans—or 10% of the population that year—participate in actions like litter clean-ups, environmental talks, and long-distance bike rides.

The momentum of that first Earth Day and the planning that went into it led to the creation of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.

Now, the focus for Earth Day 2020 is firmly on climate change and how each individual and business can do their part to offset the impact of the last century’s explosive industrial growth and the demands of modern commerce.

Carbon Offsetting

Carbon emissions from logistics can amount to anywhere from 30-50% or more of a company’s total carbon footprint.

Transportation accounts for 14% of global greenhouse gases, only behind electricity, agriculture, and manufacturing. Airplanes, cargo ships, and trucks make up over half of these emissions, and the numbers are already expected to quadruple by 2050 without intervention.

But economic prosperity and environmental survival do not need to be mutually exclusive. Even though shipping without emitting carbon is currently not possible, there are ways to rebalance emissions.

At Flexport, all LCL shipping services have been 100% carbon neutral since June 1, 2018, including OceanMatch, Flexport’s solution for businesses with LCL volumes and more flexible speed and price needs.

Since 2017, Flexport has offered customers the opportunity to offset their carbon emissions up to 100% through a partnership between Flexport.org, the company’s social impact organization, and Carbonfund.org, which directs donations to certified offset projects.

By contributing to environmentally sustainable investments, businesses can earn a Carbonfree® Shipper designation while removing carbon from the atmosphere, at a low, tax-deductible cost. The designation also lets companies attract the steadily growing base of customers who value sustainability and corporate responsibility.

Learn more about how to offset carbon emissions and reduce corporate environmental impact.

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