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EasyJet to stop using carbon offsets amid doubts over effectiveness

EasyJet has ditched its program to offset its carbon emissions with carbon offsets.

Instead, the airline has announced plans to meet net-zero goals by reducing carbon output in its day-to-day operations.

Environmental groups have hailed the development, with advocacy group Greenpeace calling on other airlines with carbon offset programmes to follow suit.

Carbon offsets are actions or investments which attempt to compensate for an individual or firm’s carbon dioxide output.

Though some are effective, many carbon offset programmes have not been found to effectively offset carbon emissions.

A Guardian investigation in 2021 found that a major carbon offset accreditation service in the US had overstated the carbon savings of projects it vetted for airlines.

The investigation also questioned the efficacy of forest conservation carbon offsets, one of the main types in use by airlines.

EasyJet, one of the first airlines to adopt the use of carbon offsets, will still aim to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

CEO Johan Lundgren told CityAM that the airline would aim to meet its emissions targets by buying more efficient aircraft.

In addition, the airline will invest in carbon removal schemes and cleaner fuel, and will investigate the possibility of using hydrogen-powered engines.

The airline will also launch more direct routes, reducing the number of more carbon-intensive connecting flight journeys it handles.

Passengers flying on easyJet will still have the option to offset a small portion of their carbon emissions by paying a small fee.

EasyJet’s decision will place renewed pressure on some other airlines, such as British Airways, which claim that some or all of their flights are carbon neutral due to carbon offsets.

Aeroplane – Easyjet 1” by puddy_uk is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.