What is #realzero?

Great question! First, let’s start with net zero – a term you’ve probably heard before…

Burn now, pay later

Nations of the world pledged in the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement to collectively achieve net zero carbon emissions globally by 2050. Climate scientists say we must hit net zero to avoid climate catastrophe. It’s a goal we should all support.

The term net zero is also being exploited by governments and corporations who are using it as a smokescreen to keep burning fossil fuels, via a loophole called “carbon offset credits.” 

Carbon offsets are when a polluter that has emitted greenhouse gases exchanges or ‘offsets’ their pollution with a ‘credit’ for carbon captured by someone else. It’s an accounting trick used by companies like Shell, Total, Exxon, and others to burn oil and fossil gas in exchange for carbon credits from tree planting or conservation projects to theoretically “offset” their carbon emissions. Basically, they’re paying to keep polluting and turning nature into a commodity in the process.

Watch and share these eye-opening films that explain how big oil and agriculture firms are deceiving us through offsetting scams

Offsets distort land and livelihoods

Offsetting isn’t just a scam, it’s unjust. Polluters in wealthy countries can effectively keep polluting by shifting responsibility for their pollution, and adding more of a burden to already vulnerable communities suffering from the effects of climate change.

Offsetting projects often distort local economies and grab local and Indigenous Peoples’ land that they use for their livelihoods. And have led to natural ecosystems being destroyed, threatened species habitat lost, and human rights abuses. 

Governments have been arguing over offset rules for decades and they still can’t agree how they should work. They’re hoping to work this out with Article 6 at COP26 in Glasgow.

Offsets don’t work and we’re running out of time. Immediately stopping burning fossil fuels is the solution.

The only way out of the climate crisis is to get to real zero.

Real Zero = Net Zero – Offsets

It means reducing and stopping carbon emissions before they are put into the atmosphere. It means full speed ahead to a transformation of our energy and transport systems to 100% renewable sources.

No fossil fuel burning. No offsetting scams.