Meet our Partners: Carbonfund.org Foundation

by 4Ocean Team February 19, 2018

Meet our Partners: Carbonfund.org Foundation

1. When was Carbonfund.org founded and where is it based?

Carbonfund.org was founded in 2003 as a non-profit and is based in East Aurora, New York. Pictured here is Lesley Carlson, who helped found Carbonfund.org, and her two daughters wearing 4Ocean Bracelets. Lesley is the wife of Eric Carlson, who is a founder and President of Carbonfund.org Foundation.


2. Can you tell us a little bit about the projects you’re currently working on?

The project 4Ocean is supporting is the Envira Amazonia Project tropical rainforest conservation and community enhancement project protecting 500,000 acres of deep in rainforest containing some of the highest levels of biodiversity on the planet and directly benefitting the local communities.  The project is based in the Amazonian Basin of Acre, Brazil and The Envira Amazonia Project shall mitigate the release of more than 12.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions over the Project's first 10 years.

The ultimate project activities are to undertake a forest carbon inventory, model regional deforestation and land-use patterns, and mitigate deforestation pressures by utilizing payments for the Project’s ecosystem services, along with ongoing monitoring of the climate, community and biodiversity impacts of the Project. In addition to voluntarily foregoing plans to convert the forests to a large-scale cattle ranch, the landowners will also implement numerous activities to assist local communities and mitigate deforestation pressures such as: offering agricultural extension training courses; beginning patrols of potential deforestation sites in the early stages of the Project; granting land tenure to local communities; and establishing alternative economic activities including commercializing the collection of medicinal plants and açaí.

 

 

3. What are a few facts that not many people know about climate change?
  1. There is more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere today than at any point in the past 800,000 years
  2. The Montana Glacier National Park has only 26 glaciers left from the 150 that were present in 1850.
  3. The US produces 25% of carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel burning
  4. The journal, Nature Climate Change suggests that as many as 13 million people may live in vulnerable regions along the U.S. coasts by 2100 if sea levels rise by 1.8 m (5.9 feet)

4. How has climate change impacted the polar bears based on scientific data you see with CO2 emissions?

Many scientific groups including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA) believe that the Arctic is tremendously exposed to the impact of global climate change which has a significant impact on polar bears. As a top predator, polar bears are a key species of the Arctic balancing out the fragile marine ecosystem via their hunting of prey. As rising temperatures melt substantial amounts of both polar ice caps and sea ice, polar bears are not able to access their food supplies, consisting mainly of seals. The result is less reproduction and the birth of smaller cubs that will struggle to fight off predators, both of which will contribute to declines in the polar bear population. 


5. How do CO2 emissions affect the health of our oceans?
Global climate change has impacted the health of our oceans via the absorption of significant levels of both CO2 emissions and the extra heat produced by elevated CO2 levels in the atmosphere. The negative results are numerous, including coral bleaching which results in starvation, shrinkage, and death of corals that support thousands of diverse species living amongst these coral reefs.  Fish migration is also a significant problem as warmer waters are causing many fish species to move toward the poles creating a disruption of fisheries across the globe. Also, many wetlands are not able to keep up with rising sea levels preventing their blades from staying above water. These wetlands have many benefits including providing habitat for diverse animal species, releasing vegetative matter into rivers which helps to feed fish, and the mitigation of flooding and erosion.

 


6. How can our readers find out what their current carbon footprint is?

Carbonfund.org has worked with thousands of businesses and individuals on calculating their carbon footprints. Please visit: https://carbonfund.org/individuals/ and review their pre-set options or select the “calculate your carbon footprint” tab to utilize their world- class carbon calculators.

For business carbon footprint calculations, or any questions on carbon offsetting, please feel free to contact Jarett Emert, Global Sustainability and Investments Manager, directly at jemert@carbonfund.org.


7. What would you say to someone that is on the fence about believing in climate change?

The last two decades have been the hottest in 400 years and possibly the warmest in several millennia with NASA claiming that average temperatures have climbed 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880. As previously mentioned, Arctic ice is disappearing rapidly along with glaciers and mountain snow.  Coral reefs have recorded their worst bleaching ever recorded since 1998.  Furthermore, most of the world's countries signed the Paris Accord to collectively work towards mitigating climate change.


8. What can our readers do to reduce their carbon footprint?

There is a lot! Some ways that you can learn about your current carbon footprint and what you can do to offset it is: 

Reduce what you can: https://carbonfund.org/reduce/

Offset the Rest: https://carbonfund.org/individuals/

 

Pictured: Jarett Emert from CarbonFund.org

Citations:
“Rising Sea Levels Could Displace 13 Million in US by 2100 - Study.” RT International, 14 Mar. 2016, www.rt.com/usa/335590-sea-level-displacement-america/.
Johnson, Terrell. “Carbon Dioxide Rises to Highest Levels in 800,000 Years.” The Weather Channel, 11 Apr. 2014, weather.com/science/environment/news/carbon-dioxide-rises-highest-levels-800000-years-20140410.
“Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data.” EPA, Environmental Protection Agency, 2017, www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/global-greenhouse-gas-emissions-data.
“Climate Impacts on Polar Bears .” IUCN/SSC Polar Bear Specialist Group, 27 Jan. 2009, pbsg.npolar.no/en/issues/threats/climate-change.html.
Fujita, Rod. “5 Ways Climate Change Is Affecting Our Oceans.” Environmental Defense Fund, 8 Oct. 2013, www.edf.org/blog/2013/10/08/5-ways-climate-change-affecting-our-oceans.
“Global Warming Fast Facts.” National Geographic News, National Geographic Society, 14 June 2007, news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/12/1206_041206_global_warming.html.
Terdiman, Daniel. “In Montana, The Retreat of Glaciers.” CBS News, CBS Interactive, 16 July 2009, www.cbsnews.com/news/in-montana-the-retreat-of-glaciers/.
Harrington, Rebecca. “The US Will Join Syria and Nicaragua as the Only Nations That Aren't Part of the Paris Agreement.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 1 June 2017, www.businessinsider.com/195-countries-that-signed-paris-climate-agreement-accord-deal-2017-5.
Fujita, Rod. “As Ocean Warms, the Impacts Multiply (Op-Ed).” LiveScience, 5 Oct. 2013, www.livescience.com/40206-as-ocean-warms-impacts-multiply.html.


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