Climate change is real. Science tells us that the
next decade is critical to addressing the climate crisis. According
UN emission gap report, global emissions need to halve by as soon as 2030, and in
addition, emissions need to be offset by as much as are emitted to
go down to zero (also called “net-zero”) by 2050. We know that
global emissions need to fall by 7.6% a year
for the next decade to meet the 1.5°C Paris target.
Here's the thing: In order to move to a carbon neutral/ net zero world, there needs to be an energy transition in which low carbon and renewable energy sources overtake carbon intensive ones. Until then, we have to rely on numerous measures (some more impactful than others) including carbon offsetting.
Solely relying on carbon offsets should never be a strategy. That's
why we are focusing on how we can minimize our emissions by being
more efficient and using renewable energy directly from the source
(solar and wind). Only after we’ve exhausted those options will we
explore using offsets.
Climate Change mitigation supports the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals #7 - Affordable and Clean Energy and #13 - Climate Action.
What we are doing.
Emission Reduction One of the best ways to take action against climate change and its impacts is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We’re working on a range of emission reduction activities focused on energy efficiency and switching to less carbon intensive activities.
While DECIEM does not have any of its own onsite renewable energy
production (solar panels on our roofs, wind turbines on our
premises), in the UK and Netherlands, we are greening the grid by
directly using renewable energy in our offices and stores.
In Canada, the USA, Australia, and Hong Kong, where we can’t source renewable energy directly, we purchase Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). RECs are issued to energy providers when one megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity is generated and delivered to the electricity grid from a renewable energy resource.
Further, recognizing that the global Covid-19 pandemic shifted the way our employees worked and continue to work--from home offices--we expanded our use of RECs to also cover our employees’ home office energy consumption, all over the world, going back to March 2020.
Our goal is to strengthen our commitment to the Earth by expanding our commitment to renewable energy use and bringing our DECIEM family along on our climate change mitigation journey
Similar to RECs, DECIEM purchases carbon offsets to ensure our operations are carbon neutral. A carbon offset represents 1 metric tonne of GHG emissions reduced from a project that avoids or reduces GHG emissions to the atmosphere. GHG reduction projects that produce carbon offsets occur all over the world. They can range from tree planting, to capturing greenhouse gases from landfill sites, to switching the type of fuel used in cookstoves. Companies can offset their GHG footprints with a range of carbon offsets that vary significantly in their quality and impact. DECIEM makes sure to only buy carbon offsets that do not harm any communities and represent real carbon reductions from projects that reinforce our three pillars.
Unlike a REC, which actually lowers DECIEM’s footprint, a carbon offset merely offsets our footprint. For 2021, DECIEM purchased offsets from the Darkwoods Forestry Project in Canada, a carbon credit project that conserves a significant area of forest in south-eastern British Columbia. The project creates climate, community and biodiversity benefits through the permanent conservation of 135,394 acres of private land and improved forest management practices. Its offsets are verified through the Verified Carbon Standard.
Carbon Neutral E-Commerce Shipping Another way DECIEM is using carbon offsets is to make all our e-commerce shipments carbon neutral. That means the greenhouse gas emissions from the delivery of anything bought online through the DECIEM website were “neutralized” using carbon offsets. For 2022, DECIEM purchased high quality carbon offsets from the same Darkwoods Forestry Project as mentioned above.
Say hello to our carbon neutral unit boxes.
Over the next two years, DECIEM is set to produce approximately 130 million unit boxes to hold all of its well-loved products. Recognizing the impact and scale of this demand, we have transitioned to carbon-neutral cardstock.
What you can do.
Everyone on the planet has a carbon footprint, and everyone has an
opportunity to decrease their emissions. The best place to start is to
educate yourself on the biggest drivers of your carbon emissions. You
can use a free online carbon footprint calculator to understand what
aspects of your lifestyle are contributing the most. This will help
you decide where you can make the biggest impact in lowering your
More and more, we are given choices to lower our footprints on a day-to-day basis. In many countries, you can switch your home to renewable energy the same way you’d switch phone or internet providers. Start by searching online for “renewable energy providers” or “green tariffs” in your country. By switching, you can lower your energy consumption footprint to zero and smile knowing your power is coming from solar, wind, or other renewable sources.
Food and transportation choices make a big impact too. Incorporating less energy intense plant-based meals and walking or cycling can dramatically reduce your carbon footprint.