Untangling the climate vocabulary

There are currently multiple terms floating around regarding the climate and our relation to our emissions. This can be especially complicated for companies, who want to communicate their efforts to do good for the climate, but want to avoid confusion and even being accused of greenwashing. Therefore, it is important to use the right terminology with the right intent. Let’s figure this out!

The way forward for companies include some balancing

What does carbon neutral mean?

“Carbon neutral” is something (like a product or a company) where the carbon emissions it causes are balanced, or compensated for, elsewhere. The result is that no additional CO2 reaches the atmosphere because of this product/company.

In order to call something carbon neutral, we must first measure the emissions that it causes, and make a careful documentation on this (GoClimate uses the GHG Protocol to measure the carbon footprint of companies). Then, efforts to reduce the emissions are implemented. This is obviously important because all emissions need to be drastically lowered to save the climate, but also to demonstrate commitment and integrity. Finally, the emissions that for some reason cannot be immediately abated are compensated for by offsetting (see our previous post of types of offsets). It is also important to note that all emissions throughout the life cycle and value chain should be included, not just the emissions from your own chimney.

There are two international standards which define carbon neutrality – ISO 14021 and PAS 2060.

Climate neutral is often used interchangeably with carbon neutral. Some argue that climate neutral distinguishes itself by including all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and not only carbon. However, the common practice is that non-carbon GHG emissions are converted into CO2-equivalents, to make for a fair comparison and easier overview. Therefore, carbon neutral is in practice usually also climate neutral.

Which direction should your company go in?

What does Net Zero mean?

The IPCC defines net-zero as that point when “anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere are balanced by anthropogenic removals over a specified period”. The Paris Agreement sets out the need to achieve this balance by the second half of this century.

The process for becoming Net Zero is therefore fundamentally similar to being carbon neutral – emissions need to be measured, reduced and balanced. The difference lies in the level of ambition and as a consequence, the execution. The reductions should follow a serious plan to be aligned with the Paris Agreement, which implies reducing emissions by at least 50% every decade. The offsets to compensate for the remaining emissions need to be of the type called permanent removals, which actually binds atmospheric carbon dioxide and stores it with confidence in its stability (see our previous post of types of offsets).

The requirements for what can be classified as Net Zero is an ongoing work, currently driven by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Their comprehensive paper Foundations for Net Zero gives a solid description of the common ground, and which challenges still need to be resolved regarding this concept.

Climate positive

There is currently no common standard definition of climate positive, and sometimes the expression climate negative is even used to define the same idea. This is however built upon the concept of carbon neutral (climate neutral), and means that what it refers to (a product, usually) has been compensated for with more offsets than it actually causes. This means that the product comes with added climate benefits.

Business as usual

In this context, business as usual means to continue operations as if climate change didn’t concern you at all. We can all do better than this!

Hopefully this breakdown made these concepts clearer to you. If there are other terms you come across and would like to see included here, please leave us a comment below!

Different kinds of carbon offsets – a quick guide

Since the start of carbon offsetting, a lot has happened. We have learned more about how we can efficiently and effectively finance the transition to a sustainable society, and these insights have allowed for the offsets to develop in several aspects. Here, we will explain the different kinds of offsets that one can choose from.

Avoided emissions

At GoClimate, we offer carbon offsetting in a type of projects that are referred to as Avoided Emissions. The idea is to prevent emissions which would have been released if it had not been for this project.

To explain with an example: in a village, everyone is cooking over open fires and collect firewood in the forest nearby. The project developer supplies improved cookstoves, which contains the heat and reduces the amount of firewood needed. The savings in firewood (reduced deforestation) is measured, and then converted into a common unit – tonnes of CO2, which can be purchased by those who want to support this project.

Perhaps the most common type of projects that can be categorized as avoided emissions are renewable energy projects. The current (polluting) energy production is compared to the installation and production of clean energy, and the difference is considered avoided emissions.

You can read more about climate projects in this previous post, and on our project page.

One kind of improved cookstove

Another type of project that avoids emissions can be natural resource management, or the protection of forests. Areas which are in danger of being deforested are identified and the protection of them is financed, to make sure that they keep storing (and capturing) carbon dioxide. This has additional benefits of biodiversity protection, but it can be hard to prove that the flora would be degraded without the protection.

Removals

Another type of offsets is referred to as removals. There are two main types of removals, where the simplest form is tree planting (reforestation or afforestation*). Tree planting can have additional benefits for the biodiversity and local populations, and is definitely needed to restore damaged ecosystems. However, although the trees bind CO2 while they grow and live, this will be released at the end of their life. This can happen unintentionally in a forest fire or naturally after 80 years, but this does not guarantee a permanent removal of CO2 from the atmosphere.

Are there permanent removals of CO2 from the atmosphere? Yes, but it’s costly and energy intensive. These technologies are sometimes called Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), or Direct Air Capture (DAC). The most well-known initiative for this is probably the Swiss company Climeworks, whose technology aims to “vacuum clean” the air from CO2. Another pioneer is Project Vesta, which will use natural wave energy to capture CO2 into rocks (weathering). These technologies are under development, and need to scale up to be really useful.

Climeworks aim to suck CO2 from the air

What should you choose?

What should we focus on? We at GoClimate believe that “if your faucet is running, you should turn it off before you start mopping the floor”, which is why we are offering offsets in the form of avoided emissions. We urgently need to stop emitting CO2, and offsetting is effectively a way to help finance the transition to renewable energy globally. But the scary truth is that as we are not doing this fast enough, we will need to remove CO2 from the atmosphere to keep global warming from spinning out of control. And to invest in it now is necessary for the research and development to happen fast enough for the technologies to scale. If these methods are only available in 50 years, it will simply be too late.

Therefore, GoClimate is currently investigating how we can also support removals as a way to stop climate change. Stay tuned to find out more and be part of the movement!

* Afforestation is the establishment of a forest or stand of trees (forestation) in an area where there was no previous tree cover

Capturing methane from manure and saving energy – Biogas project in China

We have now offset another 25,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you for taking part in this!

This is our project

In the province Shuicheng in China, this project aims to help small-scale pig farmers to build methane digesters. In these digesters, organic matter (including manure and wastes) are decayed an aerobically. According to the preparatory study, there are on average 4.3 pigs in every peasant household. Therefore, and a standard biogas digester with a volume of 8m3 is constructed. This anaerobic digester can fully handle the manure of these pigs, and collects the biogas generated during the treatment process for heat supply. This meets the thermal demands of the households themselves, by using the biogas stove with rated power 2.33kW each unit. 18 934 of these methane digesters were installed, to the benefit of an equal amount of small-scale farmers and their families.

What was the situation before?

Before the project construction, all the swine manure was stored in an uncovered anaerobic mature management system (i.e. deep pit). Large amounts of methane was emitted to the atmosphere during the manure storage, due to the anaerobic condition in the deep pit. Methane is a greenhouse gas that has an impact on the climate change some 25 times worse than CO2! Moreover, according to the preparatory investigation, the householders were using coal for cooking and heating. This was also releasing CO2 into the atmosphere, and caused indoor air pollution from particulate matter (soot), which is harmful to human health.

The outcomes of the project

The project thus results in a reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in these two ways: on the one hand, the recovery and utilization of biogas from digested slurry in the biogas digester, which reduces methane emissions that would otherwise have aroused from the deep pit storage. It prevents methane emissions by changing the management practice of manure in order to achieve the controlled anaerobic digestion, equipped with methane recovery system. Moreover, the biogas is used as thermal energy to replace the fossil fuel (coal) currently used to meet the households daily energy needs for cooking and heating. The heat generated from burning biogas effectively replace an equal amount of the heat which would otherwise be generated by a coal stove. The combined annual GHG emission reductions for both components of the project is estimated at 50,113 tCO2e annually.

The proposed project will have positive environmental and economic benefits and contribute to the local sustainable development in the following aspects:

  1. To recover methane and substitute the consumption of fossil energy,
  2. To increase employment for the local people through the construction of methane pools and the follow-up service,
  3. To improve the living and cooking conditions and the health of the local people,
  4. To popularize practical energy technology.

Read more about the project in the Gold Standard Registry

A big thanks to all of you for enabling this development!

Do you want to contribute to this, and other similar projects? Calculate your carbon footprint and start your offsetting today!

More support to wind energy in Aruba

We have now offset another 50,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you for taking part in this!

Cactus overlooking the energy production

This is our project

Aruba is one of the islands moving towards reduced dependency on fossil fuels and increased share of renewables. The first initiative for wind energy production on the island is the Wind Park Vader Piet N.V, which we are supporting through the purchase of carbon credits! This is the second time we support this project, so find the first blog post about the project HERE.

This wind park consists of 10 wind turbines that are located on an uninhabited part of the island. With a production capacity of 3 MW each, these turbines supply 12-14% of the total energy needed on the island! Since all energy consumed before the implementation of this project came from fossil fuel, the carbon intensity of the electricity available on the island was very high. Fortunately, Wind Park Vader Piet N.V has instigated a change for the better.

More support from GoClimate

We purchased credits (the proof of avoided emissions, expressed in tonnes of CO2) from this project last year in September, and now decided to do a second purchase. The climate projects issue new credits every year, corresponding to the amount of avoided emissions they can prove each year. Hence, with the kind of credits that we purchase from Gold Standard certified projects, we know that the emissions have already been avoided.

The continuous support that the project receives from selling credits every year makes sure that they can, for example, pay back loans that they had to take to build the wind power plants, and ensures the financial sustainability of the project. When the project is planned, this financial support from selling credits is taken into account in the economic balance. The project developer has to show that without this economic support, the project would not be financially feasible. This is what is referred to as ‘Additionality’ when we talk about climate projects.

Imported wings for the wind power plants came by boat to Aruba

What are the larger implications?

Vader Piet has permission to sell credits for 10 years. This has been an interesting time for the island Aruba. We have been talking to the electricity company on the island, WEB Aruba N.V., on what this has meant for them, and this has been proof that there is more that can be done in the area of renewables. It is especially impactful when we can support a project that is the first of its kind in a place, such as this one.

We have previously also supported the Sidrap Wind Energy Project, the first wind power park in Indonesia. This is important both for the public, to see for themselves what a wind energy park can do. Moreover, provides a great learning opportunity for local professionals to learn new skills, which can be replicable in future projects. Aruba is now in the planning stage of a second wind power plant, and we are so exited to be a part of that story!

Read more about the project in the Gold Standard Registry

A big thanks to all of you for enabling this development!

Do you want to contribute to this, and other similar projects? Calculate your carbon footprint and start your offsetting today!

A survey on the view of the individual carbon footprint, carbon offsetting and GoClimate

During the summer 2020, we conducted a Swedish and an English survey with ten questions among all the people who offset their carbon footprint with GoClimate. A whopping 620 people participated, corresponding to 13% of our members at that point in time.

According to our English survey, 76% have reduced their carbon footprint since they joined GoClimate. Among other things, they have installed solar panels, they eat less meat, fly less and eat more vegan food than before. 23% say that they have not made any changes to impact their carbon footprint and 0.6% (1 person) say that they have increased their footprint.

In response to the question of how they view their personal carbon footprint, around 90% of the English respondants (80% of the Swedish) state that they are working actively to reduce their footprint. 3% say that they would like to, but don’t know how. Another 4% say that they are not working actively with reducing their footprint. Political actions and financial incentives are mentioned as critical parts to enable necessary lifestyle changes.

What's your attitude to your individual carbon footprint? This diagrams shows the number of people who use carbon offsetting that are actively working on reducing their carbon footprint and how many that are not.
90% of all members that carbon offset say they are working on reducing their carbon footprint.

Most members are happy with our calculator and the type of projects we support. What we can get better at is providing guidance and support to reduce the carbon footprint. Over 20% didn’t know that we have a blog, where we educate on topics related to the carbon footprint and offer tips for how to reduce the emissions.

The reasons for our members to carbon offset with GoClimate is that it’s easy, that people want to do everything they can for the environment, and because there are parts of the carbon footprint which are hard to amend. Other reasons are that GoClimate is a small organization offering transparency about where the money goes, and that it’s perceived as clear, agile and trustworthy. This is an easy way to make an extra difference for the climate, adding to what is already done in the everyday life by these committed people.

Among the respondents behavioral change was considered important to stop climate change. The answer to the question “How important do you think behavioral change is to stop climate change?” was 8.8 in average on a scale 0-10.

The majority of the respondents found out about us via recommendations and social media. So please keep discussing the climate with friends, tell them about us and share blog posts and our infographics on Instagram.

Find the results of the 2019 member survey on carbon footprint, carbon offsetting and GoClimate here.

Supporting a Wind Power Project in the Caribbean

We have now offset another 50,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you for taking part in this!

The Caribbean is a region heavily dependent on fossil fuels, while at the same time it’s a particularly promising place for renewable energies with abundant sun and wind conditions. Demand is comparatively low because the islands have small populations, which means that small scale energy solutions have the capacity to cover a large share of the energy needs.

Vader Piet N.V. Wind Park

This is our project

Aruba is one of the islands moving towards reduced dependency on fossil fuels and increased share of renewables. The first initiative for wind energy production on the island is the Wind Park Vader Piet N.V, which we are supporting through the purchase of carbon credits!

This wind park consists of 10 wind turbines that are located on an uninhabited part of the island. With a production capacity of 3 MW each, these turbines supply 12-14% of the total energy needed on the island! Since all energy consumed before the implementation of this project came from fossil fuel, the carbon intensity of the electricity available on the island was very high. Fortunately, Wind Park Vader Piet N.V has instigated a change for the better.

Plans for the future

The national energy producer, WEB Aruba, made a commitment which increased the share of renewables to 18% in 2018, and reduced the fossil fuel consumption by 40%. Moving forward, the goal is to reduce the fossil fuel consumption by a total of 67% and to increase renewables to a total of 40% by 2022. After the first wind park was built, a first solar park has also been installed and another wind park is in the development phase.

Why not 100% renewable today?

A challenge that Aruba and other small island nations is facing when transitioning to renewables is the grid stability. Wind and solar are intermittent energies, which means that energy is produced during certain times of the day when it’s sunny or windy. However, this doesn’t always correspond with the time that the energy is needed. In some cases, energy use in industries can be rescheduled to match peak energy availability hours, but for household electricity this is much harder.

To manage this, one option is to invest in energy storage such as batteries, and another one is to use a base load energy that can be adjusted to produce energy when demand is high and renewable production is low. In some cases, this can be done with geothermal energy (like our project Dora II in Turkey), more common is hydro power, nuclear energy or fossil fuels. WEB Aruba is working with a commitment to resolve this, taking into consideration that the development has to happen over time in order to maintain grid stability as infrastructure needs to keep up. It is also crucial to keep energy prices affordable to the local population. In Europe and other places, this challenge is cushioned by our interconnected grids, where energy surplus can be sent to a neighboring country, and energy can be purchased from where the production is the greenest in the moment.

Read more about the project in the Gold Standard Registry

Vader Piet N.V. Wind Park is located far away from the residents of the island

A big thanks to all of you for enabling this development!

Do you want to contribute to this, and other similar projects? Calculate your carbon footprint and start your offsetting today!

Supporting a Solar Energy Project in India

We have now offset another 25,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you all GoClimate members for taking part in this!

The climate benefits of this 70 MW Bhadla Solar Power Plant

We decided it was time for another solar energy project, in Rajasthan, the northwestern part of India. The main purpose of this project is to produce clean electricity through photovoltaic (PV) solar panels. This is a large scale solar project. It has an installed capacity of 70 MW, generating 122,108 MWh per year.

Large scale solar PV plant in Rajasthan, India

To give you an idea of how much electricity that is – an average American home uses about 7,200 kWh per year. This project could support 16,960 American homes yearly. But as an average Indian household uses only about 1000 kWh, this equals the annual electricity consumption of 122,108 homes! Add to that that there are almost twice as many people per household in India compared to the US (2,6 compared to 4,9). This amount of electricity supplies a population of 44,096 Americans or 598,329 Indians!

Rows and rows of solar cells out in the desert

In supplying all of this clean energy, the people in this region don’t have to use fossil fuels such as coal or oil to generate electricity anymore. This is still very common in India. Coal is still the most used source of energy. About 9 percent of the energy comes from renewable sources. The share has grown exponentially, from 3,72 percent in 2014-2015. We are so excited to be a part of this positive trend! Thanks to these large investments, we help push down the prices of this clean technology, making it more affordable all over the world.

The benefits for the local community

Improved school attendance

This project has made significant contributions to strengthen the local community on their way to meet the sustainable development goals. In summer, when temperatures rise to 40 degrees Celsius in the area, up to fifty percent of students would not attend school. This is due to the unreliable electricity supply not guaranteeing adequate indoor temperatures. Now, the school attendance is almost 100 percent in summer. Moreover, the company running the project has supported the construction of improved toilets, a classroom, and a digital corner with computers and a projector. The local youth thus have better learning opportunities, and adults have also been supported with literacy sessions.

Supporting women’s developement

A Self-Help Group for women has been founded, where the women learn new skills, primarily related to tailoring and sewing. The women are also given literacy training, which they describe as a big change in their lives.

Self-Help Group for women, where they learn new skills

New clean water facilities

The company in charge of the project has also installed a water ATM in the village, and supplied the local police station with access to clean drinking water. Again, as the temperatures get very high in the summer, this makes a big difference to the locals.

These are only a few examples of the many small initiatives through which the project participant support the local community.

Locals using the newly inaugurated drinking water facilities

The importance of local participation

When a project of this scale comes into a small village, it is fundamental that they develop a good relationship with the local people. There has to be mutual trust and respect for the project to run smoothly, which entails that the project listens to the needs of the locals. That is how they can ensure that they provide what the locals actually want for themselves, and makes sure they feel ownership over their development. Therefore, we are so happy to support projects like this, because it recognizes and actively contributes to multiple aspects of sustainable growth.

Read more about the project in the Gold Standard Registry or in the CDM Registry

Want to contribute to this, and other similar projects? Calculate your carbon footprint and transition to a climate neutral life today!

Uberlândia landfills I and II Energy Project

We have now offset another 25,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you for taking part in this!

For the first time, we are investing in a project located in Brazil. Parabéns to us! The project is a Landfill to Gas Energy Project located in Uberlândia, in the state of Minas Gerais. Here, greenhouse gas emissions from two adjacent landfills are collected and converted into energy.

Collecting GHG from the landfill to convert it to energy

How does this work? As in most places in the world, the garbage that is generated by the local population is collected by garbage collectors and taken to a solid waste deposal site, also known as a landfill. In this case, this is done by a local company called Limpebrás Resíduos Ltda. The first of the Uberlândia landfills received waste from 1995 to 2010, and the second one started in 2010 with an expected 18 years of lifetime. Uberlândia I has during its operation received approximately 2,100,000 tonnes of domestic waste! This is being treated with significant care for the environment to prevent environmental damage, especially to avoid leachate into the ground.

Carefully managed landfill

But the contamination is not the only concern for landfills. The decomposing of organic waste in the landfill is also causing significant emissions of the greenhouse gas methane, CH4. Methane is a less common but stronger greenhouse gas than CO2, so the climate impact is about 25 times higher! This is why we in some places (like in Sweden) can collect separated organic waste and turn it into energy. However, this infrastructure is not yet available in all parts of the world. So, this project instead aims to collect the methane that is generated at the existing landfills, then combust it in a contained environment in order to produce energy for the local energy grid. The project will last for as long as the landfills release methane, which is until a few years after the landfill is full.

Landfill to Gas Energy Plant

Some people call this renewable energy. We are not too happy with that definition, as garbage in itself is not a renewable resource. Project Drawdown calls this “a transitional strategy for a world that wastes too much” – which we agree with. “In a sustainable world, waste would be composted, recycled, or re-used; it would never be thrown away because it would be designed at the outset to have residual value, and systems would be in place to capture it”. GoClimate fully supports this statement, while recognizing that we are not there yet. As the waste is already at the landfill and causing these emissions as we speak, we’re on board to do what we can to stop them and turn it into energy, until the global waste management can catch up in terms of reduction and recycling. Given the climate urgency, this is not an either-or question, we need to do both!

The workers who collect the garbage

 Apart from the reduced emissions from collecting the methane, we are also helping to displace fossil fuels as we provide alternative energy to the network. The project is also creating more qualified job opportunities for the local population, and the monitoring of the project has not found any negative impact for the people who do ad-hoc recycling of the garbage. Finally, the project has also reduced the odor coming from the landfill. When the project was initiated, there were no landfill to gas projects in the country which did not receive additional financing from carbon credits, so we feel confident that this is a project with high additionality.

Read more about the project in the Gold Standard Registry or in the CDM Registry

See our retired credits HERE

Want to contribute to this, and other similar projects? Calculate your carbon footprint and transition to a climate neutral life today!

What is a climate project?

So you already know that when you sign up at GoClimate, you support climate projects through carbon offsetting. But how do these projects actually work?

The main purpose of a climate project is to avoid the emission of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere. There are different ways to do this, and the carbon market is constantly evolving with new projects and better methods for measuring emissions reductions.

One way that is easy to measure and easy to understand is therefore projects that produce renewable energy. By creating the kind of energy that does not cause emissions, we give people the opportunity to stop using fossil fuels. For example, when we build wind power in India and connect more people to the electricity grid, they no longer need to use diesel generators or burn charcoal, which is often the case before the project is implemented.

Sidrap Wind Energy Park in Indonesia
Sidrap Wind Energy Project in Indonesia

Some examples of projects that GoClimate have supported which produce renewable energy:

The reason we want to contribute to this in countries like India and Indonesia is that wind power is still too expensive to be built without the income from carbon credits – this is what is meant by additionality. Wind power can produce the same energy in Sweden, but the marginal utility will be higher elsewhere as we avoid combustion of coal and diesel and contribute to raising the standard of living on site.

Another type of climate project is the capture of greenhouse gas emissions that occur in different processes, and converting them into energy instead – so-called biogas projects. The projects often involve installing improved technology so that greenhouse gases from biodegradation of organic matter, for example in landfills or in waste water, are not released into the atmosphere but are contained and converted into energy. Here we immediately avoid the emissions, and do something useful with the energy instead! This is often a bit more expensive than, for example, building wind power, which rank among the cheapest projects.

Landfill Gas to Energy project in Chile
Landfill Gas to Energy Project in Chile

Some examples of biogas projects which GoClimate have supported:

Another type of project aims to improve methods of cooking. A large proportion of the world’s population cook their food over open fire, which leads to deforestation when more and more people need firewood. By offering better equipment, the people responsible for cooking, usually women, do not need to collect as much wood. This saves both trees and time for them, and with the improved equipment it also reduces air pollution and air born particles, which has a positive impact on their health. These projects thus have great potential benefits, but are more difficult to implement because it implies changing behaviors, and then it is more difficult to measure the results. The risk is thus higher, but the benefits can be very significant.

Improved cookstoves being used in Rwanda

GoClimate has financed a few projects of this kind:

Another type of climate project has to do with trees. This can be reforestation of areas that have been deforested, the planting of trees on areas that have not had a forest before, or protection of existing forests. Projects of this kind are incredibly important because the trees bind carbon dioxide from the air, and there are many potential benefits such as increased biodiversity, improved microclimate, etc. Nevertheless, we at GoClimate have chosen not to invest in this kind of climate project. The main reason is that the carbon that is bound in the tree is admittedly absorbed, but it is not a permanent storage of carbon dioxide as it, intentionally or unintentionally, can be released into the atmosphere again. The lack of permanence and the risks associated with it means that we do not want to offset in this kind of projects.

This is a brief summary of some different types of climate projects, but there are more on the market, and more are being developed at the time of writing. Of course, since the projects are so different, the prices of the projects vary, and there is thus no fixed price for a ton of carbon dioxide. In addition, all projects have administrative costs – if no one designs, administers and supervises the project, there will be no projects and we also could not guarantee the quality of them. But that’s why we exist – to do part of the job for you who want to save the climate by offsetting emissions. Part of the cost also goes to the certification, to ensure the quality of the project. In this way we avoid projects that don’t make positive impacts, and protect ourselves from corruption and inefficiency.

Does this sound like something you want to be a part of an contribute to? Sign up here for a carbon neutral life!

Further questions? Please leave a comment!

Dora II Geothermal Energy Plant

We have now offset another 25,000 ton CO2eq in a Gold Standard certified project! Thank you for taking part in this!

This time, we are financing a new technology that we haven’t been involved with before – geothermal energy production! We are really excited to see that there are projects of this type available on the voluntary carbon credit market now, and we’ll tell you all about why this is so important.

Dora II

This project is called Dora II, and it is a geothermal energy production plant in the Aydin province in Turkey. The plant has an installed capacity of 9.5 MWe with an annual electricity production of 70,000 MWh. Geothermal plants use the heat that is stored in the ground to produce electricity. The very short tech summary is that this project utilizes something called a Binary cycle system, where fluid obtained from a well that is dug into the ground transmits its temperature to another fluid (pentane, that has a lower evaporation degree), which powers a turbine that produces electricity.

Geothermal energy is a great way to complement other renewable energies, like wind and solar, because it offers a constant supply that is not dependent on the weather. It is therefore considered a baseload, or readily dispatchable power. It can take place at all hours and under almost any weather conditions, it is reliable, efficient, and the heat source itself is free.

Geothermal energy production in Turkey

However, only 6 to 7 percent of the world’s potential geothermal power has been tapped, according to Project Drawdown. There is still a lot to discover, but it is believed that some 7 to 13 percent of the current global energy consumption could be satisfied with geothermal energy. This makes it one of the top 20 solutions to climate change as listed by Project Drawdown. However, this will only be possible if we together assume the costs of early investment and developments. That is why we at GoClimate are so excited to be supporting this project!

Turkey is a country with a huge and growing energy demand, which to a large extent is satisfied with fossil fuels that are imported from other countries. 86,5 percent of the energy supply in Turkey came from fossil fuels in 2018, and the majority of it (almost all the oil and natural gas) is imported. By growing the share of domestically produced renewable energy, Turkey can move towards satisfying its energy demands in a more sustainable way and help lead the development of green technology. This will help push down the prices of renewable energy technology, as we have seen with wind and solar before, and make geothermal energy more accessible to low income countries with high potential for geothermal (the possibility to access geothermal energy depends a lot on the composition of the earth’s crust).

Geothermal energy is location sensitive

More information about this project in the Gold Standard registry (including verification and monitoring reports) HERE