Thursday, November 8, 2007

Nasty Emissions Neutralised

Passengers on Virgin Atlantic will shortly be offered carbon offsets alongside alcohol and perfume. The cost of carbon offsetting will depend on the length of the flight and the class of seat; a one-way economy flight from London to New York will cost slightly more than a fiver, a one-way business class flight from London to Sydney would cost about 26 pounds. The offer will be made on the flight, in front of other passengers, and this may shame some people into participating who otherwise would not have.

Virgin has decided on the new policy after noting low participation in schemes offered by other airlines where passengers have the opportunity to offset the carbon emissions of their flight online. "If the person sitting next to you chooses to offset their flight, it may prick your conscience and you may pay too," the Virgin spokesman said.

Virgin say that the offset funds will go towards immediate schemes such as carbon neutral power production rather than tree planting, which can take up to 100 years to realise its carbon capture potential. No sign of them chucking out the on board magazines and merchandise and saving stacks of fuel, though...

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