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mutt 06 Sep 2019

Its seems to me that it high time UKC started calculating and publishing the carbon cost of traveling to the destinations it writes about. For instance

https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/destinations/helsinki_bouldering-12252

comes with 2.27 tonnes of CO2 emitted according to world land trust. They calculate £34 to offset this amount of carbon if you believe that sort of thing is acceptable,

I would encourage clubs to do this on their meets pages too.

The science is clear: It is understood that we are facing an unprecedented global emergency. We are in a life or death situation of our own making. We must act now. XR

https://rebellion.earth/the-truth/the-emergency/

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Emilio Bachini 07 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

I don’t think it’s UKC or clubs responsibility to manage individuals decisions. Who’s to say someone is going to fly there? They might live down the road or within a short driving distance.

Out of interest do you offset everything you do? Every time you drive a car, take a train, turn on the shower? Im sure you are aware they all have an effect. 

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DaveHK 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

> I don’t think it’s UKC or clubs responsibility to manage individuals decisions. Who’s to say someone is going to fly there? They might live down the road or within a short driving distance.

The UK in UKC stands for United Kingdom...

I think publishing that info with a destination article is a great idea. It's not managing people's decisions, it's helping them make an informed decision. Everyone is still free to ignore it.

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DaveHK 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

> Out of interest do you offset everything you do? Every time you drive a car, take a train, turn on the shower? Im sure you are aware they all have an effect. 

This is the kind of thinking that needs to change. Even if mutt doesn't offset everything he or she does it doesn't invalidate the suggestion of publishing carbon cost data. Just because there's a different/bigger/worse source of emissions out there doesn't absolve you from doing your bit or just doing what you can where you can. The days of blissful ignorance are over.

Post edited at 08:22
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Emilio Bachini 07 Sep 2019
In reply to DaveHK:

That’s true, the informed decision part.

Well the U.K part too but I thought that was a given, maybe a bit too obvious to even mention.

Last time I checked you could use UKC from outside of the U.K, if we’re being pedantic. 

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Emilio Bachini 07 Sep 2019
In reply to DaveHK:

Yes their point is still valid but flying isn’t the be all and end all of environmental change.

People are very quick to get on their high horses about the impact of flying and yet lead unsustainable lifestyles in other ways.

I was also genuinely interested whether mutt does or not. Seems like they’ve got something to say about the environment, I wanted to see if it went beyond the obvious and demonisation of air travel. 

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Trangia 07 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

Good idea. I agree that it is more likely to catch on if people are presented with the facts (carbon cost) when booking a holiday rather than trying to dictate, judge or moralise with them.  I'd like to see this sort of info published by travel companies in their glossy brochures.

Slight diversion off the subject, but I'm increasingly seeing vehicles parked up with their engines still running. Some of the worst offenders are parents waiting outside schools keeping their A/C going. With the approach of winter it will soon be keeping their heaters going. Delivery drivers are also often guilty. Does anyone know what the Law really is concerning idling engines? Is there a National prohibition, or is it up to the Local Authority?  Understandably it's not being policed due to the austerity cuts, but the problem for passers by is that it you politely ask drivers switch their engine off, you get often a mouthful of abuse back. There is very little educational advertising about this anti social behaviour.

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Emilio Bachini 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Trangia:

I believe it’s against the law. I caught a day time television program about it but it’s understandably hard to police given the length of time people usually do it for.

In parts of the U.S a vigilante system exists where bystanders can present evidence against offenders and receive a cut of the penalty, which is considerably more than the U.K and in some place a total of thousands of dollars. 

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Tom V 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

It's an offence to let it run at idle "unnecessarily". That's about as helpful as being told to avoid "unnecessary " travel.

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didntcomelast 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Trangia:

May not apply to all delivery drivers but I work for a very large supermarket chain as a home shopping delivery driver and we are penalised if we allow our engines to idle excessively. ( We accrue bonus points for safe and efficient driving which includes no unnecessary engine idling. The bonus points can be exchanged for store discounts.) 

The only issue is during winter months if we have a long wait between deliveries. No engine idling means no heating in the cab which means cold van drivers. 

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Tom V 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Tom V:

The Highway Code is a bit more helpful: it mentions " a couple of minutes" as being the desirable limit. But of course, that depends on your definition of " a couple"

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mutt 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

> Yes their point is still valid but flying isn’t the be all and end all of environmental change.

> People are very quick to get on their high horses about the impact of flying and yet lead unsustainable lifestyles in other ways.

> I was also genuinely interested whether mutt does or not. Seems like they’ve got something to say about the environment, I wanted to see if it went beyond the obvious and demonisation of air travel. 


Emilio, I accept your points of view. Its all about sustainable choices and yes one or two short haul flights can still leave you within the 'one world' personal carbon footprint.

Anyway, without claiming to be a saint I have made the following changes in response to the impending climate emergency, and extinction crisis faced by many communities around the world, not least the poor souls in the Bahamas after the devastation caused by Hurricane Dorian this week

1. Vegan diet supplemented occasionally with sustainable fish.

2. 3.4Kwpeak photovoltaic array for electicity

3. Pure Energy 100% renewable electric and Gas supplies

4. Zero purchases of everything except consumables (i.e food) for 1 year. I might have to get a pair of approach shoes as I nearly slid of a cliff top at Swanage last week.

5. I do fly but limit myself to one short haul per year. That might have to change.

6. 8000 miles cycled and train and 2000 driven, compared with 10000 miles driven before.

7. I have not burdened to the world with offspring but I do bring up two children with ethical living at the heart of their education.

It sounds like a lot of sacrifice but it really isn't. There is great pleasure to be found in pulling old clothes out of the cupboard and wearing them. Fixing broken things. Caring for what I have so it will last. Letting someone else concentrate on the vehicle whilst I read a book. Living in the moment and not considering all the ways that one extra thing in my life will give me back some time. And we live in a beautiful country, with a huge variety of landscapes.

So my idea was offered only as information, I don't think I told anyone to stop flying. I just want everyone to know the full costs of doing so. I have not explicitly offset the flights I have taken but have rather taken pains to live within a sustainable footprint instead (1.06 worlds according to the WWF calculator. https://footprint.wwf.org.uk/

I know I'm not perfect, and I'm not judging anyone for the compromises they make. Just be honest with yourselves is all I ask. I think we will all be happier if we start living the the way we know is right. Acting as if it doesn't matter when we know it does is not good for our psychological well-being.

And finally I've only enumerated my virtues because you asked me to. That shouldn't become a reason for you or anyone else to live un-virtuously (if that is word!).

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HeMa 07 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

What you mean, my calculated carbon emissions to say Taivaskallio are 0, as I can and have walked there numerous times. 

Now Stanage, it’s a lot more ;)

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Emilio Bachini 07 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

Thank you for getting back to me. It sounds like you’ve made some informed decisions. How’s it all going? Any observations worth mentioning? 

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Andypeak 07 Sep 2019
In reply to Trangia:

> Slight diversion off the subject, but I'm increasingly seeing vehicles parked up with their engines still running. Some of the worst offenders are parents waiting outside schools keeping their A/C going. With the approach of winter it will soon be keeping their heaters going. Delivery drivers are also often guilty. Does anyone know what the Law really is concerning idling engines? Is there a National prohibition, or is it up to the Local Authority?  Understandably it's not being policed due to the austerity cuts, but the problem for passers by is that it you politely ask drivers switch their engine off, you get often a mouthful of abuse back. There is very little educational advertising about this anti social behaviour.

As of October Nottingham city council will be issuing fixed penalty noticed to drivers who refuse to turn off idling engines when asked to do so

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Michael Hood 08 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

It's a good idea for increasing the information out there on the impact our lifestyles have.

Start with flights, it might then generate demand for similar information on other things.

But, got to be careful to not over-concentrate on carbon, there are other nasties out there (similar to the way CO2 emissions are not the only nasty to come out of cars).

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Tom V 08 Sep 2019
In reply to Michael Hood:

Very true. I was surprised to learn that rice growing produces more methane than beef rearing.

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jimtitt 08 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

> Emilio, I accept your points of view. Its all about sustainable choices and yes one or two short haul flights can still leave you within the 'one world' personal carbon footprint.

> Anyway, without claiming to be a saint I have made the following changes in response to the impending climate emergency, and extinction crisis faced by many communities around the world, not least the poor souls in the Bahamas after the devastation caused by Hurricane Dorian this week

> 1. Vegan diet supplemented occasionally with sustainable fish.

> 2. 3.4Kwpeak photovoltaic array for electicity

> 3. Pure Energy 100% renewable electric and Gas supplies

> 4. Zero purchases of everything except consumables (i.e food) for 1 year. I might have to get a pair of approach shoes as I nearly slid of a cliff top at Swanage last week.

> 5. I do fly but limit myself to one short haul per year. That might have to change.

> 6. 8000 miles cycled and train and 2000 driven, compared with 10000 miles driven before.

> 7. I have not burdened to the world with offspring but I do bring up two children with ethical living at the heart of their education.

> It sounds like a lot of sacrifice but it really isn't. There is great pleasure to be found in pulling old clothes out of the cupboard and wearing them. Fixing broken things. Caring for what I have so it will last. Letting someone else concentrate on the vehicle whilst I read a book. Living in the moment and not considering all the ways that one extra thing in my life will give me back some time. And we live in a beautiful country, with a huge variety of landscapes.

> So my idea was offered only as information, I don't think I told anyone to stop flying. I just want everyone to know the full costs of doing so. I have not explicitly offset the flights I have taken but have rather taken pains to live within a sustainable footprint instead (1.06 worlds according to the WWF calculator. https://footprint.wwf.org.uk/

> I know I'm not perfect, and I'm not judging anyone for the compromises they make. Just be honest with yourselves is all I ask. I think we will all be happier if we start living the the way we know is right. Acting as if it doesn't matter when we know it does is not good for our psychological well-being.

> And finally I've only enumerated my virtues because you asked me to. That shouldn't become a reason for you or anyone else to live un-virtuously (if that is word!).

"Interesting" all these carbon calculators, they seem to go for the first easy targets like food, travel and housing energy but then they go to pieces. I've just tried one that ignores the two teenage spongers that live in my house (my kids) and lumps me well over a ton of CO2 for my insurance bill!

It eascapes me how 20% of my carbon footprint is accrued because I have private (German) health insurance whereas for someone on the NHS this wouldn't appear.

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Robert Durran 08 Sep 2019
In reply to jimtitt:

> "Interesting" all these carbon calculators, they seem to go for the first easy targets like food, travel and housing energy but then they go to pieces. 

Their estimates vary a lot too. I was recommended by a friend who works in a related area to use Cotap (carbon offsets that assist the poor). Its estimates seem very rough and ready, so I just got a vague figure and rounded it up generously. It is effectively a worthy charitable donation and if it does a bit to help with climate change too, so much the better.

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BruceM 08 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

These days everyone is pretty happy to blow energy without blinking: by checking their smartphone every millisecond, dreaming of their next car, getting a better paid job and all the resources that involves...  Humans will destroy the world as they know it no matter what. But evolution -- and entropy -- will continue and we have no idea what the future will look like or what kind of entities will inhabit it. If people were really serious about saving the (current) world, there would need to be a mega paradigm shift.

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Toerag 09 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

> Its seems to me that it high time UKC started calculating and publishing the carbon cost of traveling to the destinations it writes about.

I agree. The better informed people are the better they can make decisions. It also demonstrates that the powers that be are paying attention to climate change.

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Toerag 09 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

> Yes their point is still valid but flying isn’t the be all and end all of environmental change.

> People are very quick to get on their high horses about the impact of flying and yet lead unsustainable lifestyles in other ways.

>  I wanted to see if it went beyond the obvious and demonisation of air travel. 

Air travel is pretty demonic though - as an example I'd have to drive my car for 3 years to overtake the emissions from flying my family to Germany to visit relatives.  In terms of speed of CO2 output it's difficult to beat flying, and so much flying is done purely for convenience.

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Trangia 09 Sep 2019
In reply to didntcomelast:

> May not apply to all delivery drivers but I work for a very large supermarket chain as a home shopping delivery driver and we are penalised if we allow our engines to idle excessively. ( We accrue bonus points for safe and efficient driving which includes no unnecessary engine idling. The bonus points can be exchanged for store discounts.) 

> The only issue is during winter months if we have a long wait between deliveries. No engine idling means no heating in the cab which means cold van drivers. 

As a mountaineer, I'm surprised that you use this excuse for engine idling. There is plenty of excellent cold weather clothing available to overcome the problem of cold drivers, which must surely be a better option than idling engines!?

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tjekel 09 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

Somehow offtopic but related to the OP. I just looked for ways to get to Font from Vienna.

Option 1, train, approx. 13 hours, they can not even offer one ticket for the full trip... But in the region of 500€.

Option 2, flight to CDG and rental car, 107 + 140€ for five days. 4 hours.

Time is not the problem although you lose a day in all, the problem is that the low emission travel is double or triple the price. I liked the recent southern Europe by train discussion... We need more of this, and at the same time the political will to influence pricing of various modes of travel. 

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mutt 09 Sep 2019
In reply to tjekel:

cycling? 69 hours according to google. or perhaps there is some good bouldering closer to home. Font is actually crap anyway unless you stoop to using pof!

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tjekel 10 Sep 2019
In reply to mutt:

Well, this is exactly the example I use to explain why algorithms can be crap. To secondary school students.

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Emilio Bachini 11 Sep 2019
In reply to Toerag:

Out of interest is your maths calculated per person?

Obviously a plane can move a few more people than a car, as well as luggage and I was wondering how this effects the equation. Are ferries or trains (to get off this little island) taken into consideration. 

Does flying a full plane, despite the extra weight make more sense environmentally? 

I’m not saying air travel is good, I’m genuinely interested to learn.

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HeMa 11 Sep 2019
In reply to Emilio Bachini:

I seem to recall that the values (given by the likes of BA, Lufthansa) are often per person w/ luggage in a reasonably full plane. So for a fully booked plane with almost no luggage, the values will be slightly lower.

So for calculating these values,  having numerous sources often makes sense (and try to see what are the criteria used on the calculation). And also compare the given value agains something else.

So from one calculator, a round trip from Manchester to Orly (flying) for bouldering results in 193 kg of CO2. With the most economical VW T5 van, that means driving around 1150 km (so a tad over driving to Cairngorm and back from Manchester for a weekend of climbing solo. 2 round trips if 2 persons in the car)... oh and I guess the real world mileage and CO2 emissions are likely greater than the 167g/km value VW advertises for the most economical T5 SWB. Or buying around of 9 kg of beef (per the article I used, high efficiency Swedish beef ;) ). Get's the stuff in perspective.


And I'm certainly not saying one should fly, but as can be seen from the examples... Some other things can cause more emissions that the short haul flight....


That being said, purely numerical CO2 emissions are not the only variable... For the environment, CO2 and other emissions from airplanes tend to have more effect as the emission source is higher up in the athmospere (mainly the other compounds,  not CO2).

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Tom V 11 Sep 2019
In reply to Trangia:

You could extend that advice to home heating and fuel emissions. Most people who care about the environment would probably accept that putting a jumper on in the house rather than turning up the heating a notch is perfectly sound advice (unless a Tory minister suggests it, of course...)

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