Carbon Offsets For Flying

September 4, 2017

photo by Henrik Prüzelius

If you’ve read the About Me page you know I love two things: conserving resources and traveling. Unfortunately, the high carbon impact of air travel can make the two hard to reconcile. However, options do exist, and they are getting better and better due to pressure from environmental groups.

According to Peter Miller, senior scientist with the Energy & Transportation Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, “early offset programs generally erred on the side of being too flexible and not standardized.” However, in the past few years things have changed. Airlines have begun to partner with environmental groups to offer worthwhile carbon offset programs that have been shown to make a difference. And if, like me, you thought it would be prohibitively expensive to offset your carbon footprint when you fly, think again. I recently purchased carbon offsets for two people to fly from New York to Idaho for just over $25.

photo by Stefan Hofecker Photography

Although air travel emissions only account for about five percent of global warming right now, that number is expected to rise significantly since the volume of air travel has been steadily increasing and flight fuel efficiency has not kept pace.


Delta Airlines, the first U.S.airline to offer carbon offsets, has partnered with The Nature Conservancy to offer its customers the option to make donations to one of three Nature Conservancy projects; the Clinch Valley Conservation Forestry Program in Virginia, the Rio Bravo Climate Action Project in Belize or the Valdivian Coastal Reserve Project in Chile. On Delta’s website you will find a carbon calculator as well as links to these programs for donating either dollars or miles.

United Airlines has two programs to which you can donate: Sustainable Travel International’s Capricorn Ridge Wind Farm in Texas or Conservation International’s Alto Mayo Forest Carbon Project in Northern Peru. Like Delta they have an online carbon calculator to help you out and they accept dollars as well as miles.

photo by Virgil Telmo

As Geoffrey Heal, professor of Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School, recently stated in a Smithsonian article by Natasha Geiling, “If you’re a traveler and you’re greenhouse gas conscious, then this is a legitimate way of creating an offset. There’s nothing bogus about it. It makes sense. It works.”



Improve Your Junk Mail Karma

September 1, 2017

Is your mailbox (your real mailbox, not the one on your laptop) inundated with catalogs you flip through for a minute and then toss? Coupon books? Fliers? Credit card offers? I don’t have to tell you a lot of that discarded paper ends up in a landfill. I also don’t have to tell you that you probably don’t have the time to contact each of these companies to cancel your subscriptions. While there are some web sites like DMA Choice and CatalogChoice that give you contact information for catalog companies the information is not always complete and usually requires some leg work on your part.

PaperKarma is an app that makes unsubscribing from unwanted catalogs pretty painless. Once you have set up your profile, which takes about a minute, you take a picture with your phone of the logo or address of the company whose catalog you want to give the heave-ho, upload the image, and hit unsubscribe me. You get four unsubscribe requests for free but you do have to pay to keep using the app after that. A month of unlimited unsubscribes is $1.99 and a year’s worth is $19.99.

Download for iOS here

Download for Android here

'Fresh Morning' Recycled Paper Dangle Earrings

‘Fresh Morning’
Recycled Paper Dangle Earrings

I’ve been wanting for a while to do a post about recycled things that are attractive. So many recycled products are not very pretty and, although we may want to buy them to support companies or artists who use recycled products we don’t buy them because we don’t actually like them.

So, here are some products made with recycled materials that, at least in the eye of this beholder, are esthetically pleasing.

Read the rest of this entry »

Roses and Clematis Intertwined

For me there is always a joy in watching a garden evolve over time, whether it’s my own garden, the garden of a friend or of a client.

On the LinkedIn site of the National Association of Professional Women in Landscape, Karen Chapman, owner of Le Jardinet talks about a garden she designed for friends/clients that involved intertwining Roses and Clematis along a pergola over the home’s garage. She discusses how rewarding it is to design a garden for a client who will let you visit year after year to follow its evolution. The post is titled Friends and can be found on her blog

Click here for more information about Karen, her company and her new book.

Urban Gardens posted about this very portable greenhouse on their site a few days ago and I thought it was so great I just had to post about it on my blog.

This amazing greenhouse was designed by Studio Besau-Marguerre in Hamburg in collaboration with Adrien Petrucci. It comes with a leather strap, which, aside from being fashionable, is also practical as you can move this small greenhouse inside or out as weather permits.

Twig Plant Markers

June 9, 2012

Twig Garden Markers

I saw these great  garden markers on Urban Gardens and just loved them. They are made by Jo in Edmonton and sold on her Etsy store.

Jo makes these from Manitoba Maple twigs she finds in her yard. The ink is heat stamped to make them okay for outdoor use.

You can also ask Jo to customize a set for you if you want different names on them.

Five are $20

Artichoke and Euphorbia Leaves

This is my entry for this week’s photo challenge. It means summer to me because I love mixing edibles in with my flower beds and I find that artichokes look particularly good in a perennial bed. I love the way their leaves are structured. And I love artichokes!

%d bloggers like this: