Partnership Provides Green Air Travel

September 22, 2019, 8:15 AM HST (Updated September 22, 2019, 10:08 AM)
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The 1,000-acre Ka`awaloa Hawaiian Forest Conservation Easement on the western slope of Mauna Loa is one of the latest projects proposed for inclusion in the Forest Legacy Program. DLNR photo.

A Hawai‘i nonprofit and an airline in the Northeast have teamed up to offer the public a way to fly green.

Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative (HLRI) last week announced the launch of a partnership with New England based start-up Jet-Set Offset. Through the partnership, individuals and businesses will have the opportunity to offset the carbon footprint of their commercial air travel while simultaneously helping to reforest Hawai‘i.

“Air travel impacts our planet in a big way,” said Jet-Set Offset Co-Founder Anna Ford. “Last year, Americans flew a record high 1.5 trillion miles and, at current rates of passenger flight growth, air travel could account for over 25% of global carbon emissions by 2050. When we fly, offsetting our carbon footprint with mileage-based donations to organizations working locally toward climate solutions is one of the most effective steps we can take as individuals to combat climate change. Our partnership with HLRI will allow travelers to not only offset the environmental impact of their flights, but help reforest Hawaii’s rare forests in the process.”

It only takes about one minute to sign up online at https://jetsetoffset.com/?ref=hlri to donate one cent per mile flown—the average estimate of the cost to offset carbon emissions from air travel. Jet-Set Offset’s online platform automatically calculates the air mileage traveled and HLRI will receive the tax-deductible donation. Each donation will go toward the purchase of Gold Standard-certified carbon credits for offsetting the carbon footprint of the flight and toward the planting of endemic legacy trees in the Hawaiian Legacy Forest.

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“In addition to successfully planting 450,000 trees, this forest represents the first and only certified carbon project of any kind in Hawai‘i and the only Gold Standard-certified forest carbon credit in North America,” said HLRI Executive Director Jeffrey Dunster. “Legacy Carbon represents an important shift in our thinking about carbon offsets and carbon-neutral practices, allowing companies and organizations across a variety of industries to offset their environmental impact right here in Hawai‘i.”

For every 9,000 miles flown, a legacy tree will be planted in honor of the donor. A certificate of planting will be emailed, with a unique RFID number that can be used to view the tree’s location and growth online using HLRI’s TreeTrackerTM.

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