Can I buy offsets for someone else?

We’re currently working on a way to “gift” carbon offsets to an individual friend or relative, but for now, you can bundle offsets for multiple people in either here, the family plan or employee offset plan

How do we calculate price per tonne?

The cost per tonne of CO2e captured or reduced can vary significantly depending on the project type and its location. We invest across a range of projects (8-15 each month), we take the average of what it costs per tonne over all of these. We choose the projects with the aim of getting a blend of project types and geographic locations while at the same time averaging out at $5.50 per tonne of CO2e. We feel this is the right balance between breadth of project and an affordable monthly cost. For trees ($0.45 per tree) and plastic ($0.69 per kg) it’s simpler, they both have a fixed cost. We add 20% to the gross cost of the projects to cover our costs such as payments fees, research, system maintenance and development, climate awareness activity and staff costs.

How much carbon does a single tree absorb in its lifetime?

That depends on a number of factors such as age, species and environmental conditions but the most common estimates range between 400-900kg of CO2  captured in a tree’s lifetime. We’ve decided to be cautious in our estimation, using 200 kg as a lifetime estimation for each tree planted. As a result we’re confident that 200 kg is very much on the low side by anyone's measure and at Switch2Zero we don’t want to oversell the potential impact.

What does CO2e mean?

CO2e is shorthand for Carbon Dioxide Equivalent.  When talking about climate change and global warming you often hear the term ‘greenhouse gases’ too, that’s because there are a number of gases (such as methane) that contribute significantly to global warming by trapping heat in the atmosphere in a similar way that Carbon Dioxide does.  CO2e is used as a metric so that it is possible to bundle together all the greenhouse gases and articulate their size and impact in one consistent metric. The benefit of this is that we can focus on the reduction of all greenhouse gases, not just Carbon Dioxide.  

Do Voluntary Carbon Offsets / Trees / Plastics attract VAT when purchased?

No, they do not. Voluntary carbon offsets are outside the scope of VAT, as sales of these credits do not meet the conditions to be ‘consumption’ envisaged by the VAT system.