Silver Donald Cameron

Welcome to Silver Donald Cameron’s blog! Dr Cameron is the author of 19 books and of many plays, films, magazine articles, radio and TV scripts. He is currently the host and executive producer of and of its feature documentary, Green Rights: The Human Right to a Healthy World. In 2019, he was appointed the first Farley Mowat Chair in Environment at Cape Breton University, where he earlier served as professor, dean and writer-in-residence. He currently teaches an on-campus/online course called Green Rights.

Who’ll Sell Me Bundled Offsets?

I'm happy to pay a little extra to buy my power from Bullfrog Power, which puts renewable electricity into the grid in proportion to the power I take out of the grid. I pay a little extra, but I help to build up the renewable infrastructure, and I cancel out the carbon emissions from generating the electricity I use.

What about other emissions from my life and work? I try to reduce them or eliminate them wherever I can – for instance, by sealing my house and by heating with wood as much as possible,  and by buying carbon offsets which pay someone to reduce emissions elsewhere by an amount that at least balances the emissions I create. But buying offsets takes some time, some dedication, some record-keeping, and some research. Who is selling the offsets? What are they actually doing? Are they delivering the benefits I'm paying for?

What I'd really like to do is to buy my fuel from a company that adds the offsets right into the price of the fuel, as Bullfrog does with electricity. I would happily pay a small premium per litre of gasoline or heating oil for the knowledge that the emissions from the fuel were being cancelled out by the matching offsets I was buying at the same time. The airlines used to do this, although I haven't seen them doing it lately; you could buy offsets bundled right into the price of your ticket.

There's a green opportunity here for companies selling oil, gasoline, transportation and maybe a lot of other things. I'd happily give them my business. Any takers?