I'm about to produce 9t of CO2 emissions

Leaving Germany next week for more exciting work at Silverstripe in New Zealand, I’m researching about my travel. With Web 2.0 and buzzword power of course.

At first i tried a web-app for planning my itinary: just send your flight-confirmation-emails to tripit, and they provide you with a nice printable travel-plan (with weather/maps/directions etc.). Unfortunately it didn’t accept the format of my booking agency, so no dice here (manual entry is way too tedious). Very handy tool for US-based travellers though!

Then I looked up info about my 2-day stopover in Osaka/Japan on Wikitravel – an incredibly useful resource, one of the best use-cases of a wiki that i’ve seen so far. Seatguru provided me with a nice schematic view of the A340-600 that I’ll be taking there, showing bad seatings and wing-positions.

I had a discussion with my family the other day, about me being so eco-friendly by not commuting by car down in Wellington. They argued that I produce my year’s worth of carbon-emissions just by taking the plane down to NZ – which I couldn’t believe. Turns out it is true: The TerraPass website calculated that I spend 8,958t of CO~2~ on my 92,538km travel (roundtrip with several stopovers). I first thought this was the total emissions for all 340 passengers, but heck no, thats only my little contribution. The specifications for an A340-600 show that it can take up to 200,000 litres of fuel (how on earth does that thing even take off?!).

I could go carbon neutral by donating around $65 to planting new trees, according to TerraPass. Thats quite a bit of money, especially if you think how much good this amount could do in charity. I’m thinking about factoring it into the travel expenses though (which everybody should be forced to do anyway – see the Ökosteuer (economic tax) in Germany).

In Germany, lots of people even do short flights to Paris/Mailand/Stockholm for shopping costing €10 (made possible by cheapo airlines and EU-subventions). Definetly puts some perspective on being so “global”, and travelling across the world. Another argument for telecommuting/teleconferencing…