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Carbon offsetting takes off on all BA UK flights
British Airways (BA) is now offsetting carbon emissions for passengers on all flights within the UK and investing the money in green projects around the world. The move, which began on 1 January 2020, affects 75 daily flights between London and 10 UK cities, including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh.
But what about travel abroad? A new study from 1st Move International has calculated the cost of carbon for the 20 most visited holiday destinations from the UK and worked out how many trees would be ‘owed’ for each trip. As an example, a return trip from London to Phuket, would see each passenger owing the planet 19 trees. The study also visualised annual figures in terms of football fields worth of trees. The 15.62mn UK visitors to Spain, for example, would each owe 43,237,500 trees, equivalent to around 3,017 football pitches.
Looking at business travel, Asia is the worst offender. A business trip from London to Singapore will see you owing 20 trees, with Hong Kong and Tokyo coming next with 18.
Jack Limerick, Director of Web Services at 1st Move International, comments: ‘Everyone is aware that air travel has an impact on the environment, but from our research we found that people struggled to picture exactly what this meant. To the average person, 0.16 tonnes of CO2 is a vague figure – there’s no way to know if that’s a lot or a little. So we wanted to visualise these numbers in a clear way that people would understand, through trees, through football fields. When displayed like this, the results are both sobering and surprising. The fact that we’d each have to plant six trees to offset a holiday to Spain – that’s a shocking figure per person. Or to think that the UK in total, owes 3,017 football fields worth of trees to cover the 15mn visitors we send to Spain annually – these numbers really put the scale into perspective.’