Carbon Self Tax

We do a German festival each year. It is one of the highlights of our calendar and it is amazing.

Leipzig is deep in Germany and whilst technically, ferry & drive, it would take at least an extra day each way. Alas due to work I'm limited in the length of time I can take off. The festival is on the edge of this in terms of time already.

It is plausible to train it, particularly if you live in London. We don't so it adds getting to London, then multiple trains to get to Leipzig. We both had back issues and tend to limit lifting and shifting of heavy cases as much as possible. It would be a very long day of lifting and shifting to do the train. Also having a rough look (eurostar is only 3 months bookable) at costs it is double plus!

Flying takes two flights. Birmingham to probably Frankfurt, Frankfurt to Halle. It is the way we did last year after the Stanstead direct to Halle stopped running. It IS plausible to train down from Frankfurt and I looked at the carbon impact versus…

Carbon Offset Investing - revisited

So back in September 2019 I posted about Carbon Offset investing.

I tried €50 as an experiment and it seemed to work OK. I talked about putting some more in and actually ended up rounding my total investment up to €500

I've always considered this more as a charitable gift in my head as to be fair it still seems a bit too good to be true. 5-7% is a very good rate, helping people and reducing carbon emissions too. Personally as long as it hits a good carbon reduction and also helps people, then as a carbon offset charitable thing it wins in my book.
The Split being

Greenlight Planet - 30% (€150)
Solynta - 30% (€150)
Daystar Power - 20% (€100)
Kingo - 20% (€100)

Which adds up to some supporting health, education, growth, reducing poverty, sustainable cities and the big one of interest, a total of 29.15 Tons (26,444 Kg) of carbon reduced - Which to be honest is staggering!

After 4 months I have actually received some small interest back from Solynta & Greenlight a total of  €5.23!
Ok not a…

My car

My Car - I've a 2005 Audi A8 D3 4.2 petrol V8 (288 g/km). It's a nice car and i've had it about 3 years and it's always been pretty good to me, but I've been looking at changing it for a while. Since I used to have an older version of the S8 I've been keeping an eye on the market with an idea of upgrading. I've almost done it a couple of times, going to look at cars but never quite being happy with the ones I've seen.

Following this journey i've had a look at the specs of the Audi D3 V10 S8 in a bit of a different light and at 319 g/km emissions, i'm just not sure I can afford that! The ~£500 tax isn't the bit that bothers me, nor the poor fuel economy because I could afford the money to run it. It's that extra 31g/km increase that I am no longer happy with. 

On a roughly average (for me) year i'm at about 15,000 miles, so :

15,000 miles = 24140 , 31g = 0.000031 tonnes

0.000031 x 24140 = 0.748 tonnes of extra CO2

That unfortunately isn…


I couldn't afford a Tesla, or perhaps I won't at the moment. It's a bit of shame as the recent Model 3 is rated as one of the best cars, yeah, not just for an EV, but for all cars. It looks awesome, is full of tech and i know i'd love it!
It would handle my commute for week or two and even be good for most longer range journeys without even needing to charge away from home, let alone the awesome supercharger network. They are definitely the way forwards and the normal major brands are still struggling to get to the level of the older Model S, let alone the model 3 or the soon to be released crossover model Y that'll take the car world by storm. The sales stats for the Model 3  are epic. I totally believe in the company, their vision and for shaking up the car industry and pushing Electric Vehicles into the forefront.

The BASIC model 3 is £37k, I'd prefer the awd long range at £46k and neither include the £6k autopilot. Either would be way more of a stretch than …

Carbon Offset Investing?

As per this Climate Change Youtube Video at about 14mins in mentioned something that piqued my interest. Investing in Solar for developing countries can make a huge difference in terms of reducing carbon emissions and a tonne of carbon is a tonne of carbon! Also it improves the standard of living for people, helps education and can give a return on investment. That makes it a triple WIN if not more!

A swift bit of research and on  TRINE which was linked in the video sources and it has existed for a few years, there are some news stories of successful investments and it appears to be genuine. 

As per ANY investing thing, due diligence is always advised and if I am honest, this is probably one of the riskier ideas in terms of capitalist ideals. Whilst Trine exists as a platform/company i'm not sure you have much comeback on them, pretty much like kickstarter, they are a facilitator and the loan becomes between you and the 3rd party. They rate them which is probably better than kicksta…

Green Gas ?

OK Green electricity looks good, what about Green Gas?
My estimated future gas use is 11,838 kwh - personally that seems a bit high, but whilst my home is reasonably new (2007), well insulated and with modern double glazing, it is end of terrace and tall. I've a Nest and typically get a virtual green leaf for almost every day, with it auto adjusting to save me energy (money!) - I've a gas hob, but the cooker is electric. I don't do a lot of "cooking" apart from weekend breakfast, occasional stir-frys and the odd meal to impress my partner!

Natural gas is fairly low (comparatively) at 0.210 per kwh  which gives 2.5 tonnes in mainly heating - Actually given the journey with Green Electricity and OVO using natural gas for electricity generation with  204g then 210g sounds in the right ball park!

So is green gas an option.....Actually yes, OVO has that as an optional upgrade:
Green Gas
15% Biogas, 85% Carbon Offset.**We offset by funding worldwide projects that protect CO…

Green Electricity ?

Is it worth switching to a green electricity tariff ???

I'm with OVO Energy, which last time I looked at the MSE Money club thing was one of the cheapest options with fair customer rating for my area that fitted my needs for electricity and gas. I tend to pretty much choose on price.

My tariff is Better Energy, which it seems by luck more than anything, is fairly reasonable. It has a minim 33% from renewables and the company pride or at least sell themselves pretty well on RENEWABLE

Due to various bits, changing and estimates and other bits i've not got a very accurate idea of how much electricity I use. However given the last 3 months totaled up and divided i get around 500kwh per month. On that basis, lets say I use 6000kwh a year

After a bit of a search on the net i found Electricity Carbon Generation data on how much carbon electricity seems to generate. It's WAY more in depth than i really want to go but at the bottom gives a simple figure of 10,000kwh  equating to 5.65…