What does it mean to become carbon neutral?

August 11th, 2021

What is carbon neutrality?

Let’s start with your own business. It doesn’t really matter if big or small, each company leaves traces of carbon dioxide. Moreover, even you as an individual, bear in fact carbon footprint. Starting off with daily operations of your company, finishing off your drive home after long day at work, each action causes a reaction and makes up your carbon footprint. So, what does it mean to be ‘carbon neutral’?

Carbon neutrality means offsetting your emissions that have already arisen. You and your business release certain amount of carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere, but you take measures to compensate them, so that your balance of emissions produced and compensated is equal. Achieving carbon neutrality, hence being ecologically balanced, is a process that one needs to take to have net neutral impact on the environment. As a company we needed a guidance to understand and offset our carbon footprint. We found the right people to do so and show us the path to greener future so that we can be a leader in sustainable market shift. 

How to become carbon neutral? 

If your business is not built upon renewable energy sources, your carbon footprint is not zero. Leading companies within every industry, recognize the importance of stable climate and the need of its protection.  Hence various methods of reducing the carbon footprint have been introduced – from switching to solar, wind systems as a main energy sources to introducing internal carpools within the employees, are just few of many possible activities against climate change. There are also companies helping to calculate and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by supporting and investing into carbon offsetting projects locally or internationally. Some of the examples of the projects are planting trees, forest and wetland restoration as well as buying carbon credits. 

How can a transport company achieve carbon neutrality? 

To become carbon neutral a company does have to follow certain steps, stay determined and consistent in its actions.

  1. Calculate your carbon footprint – If you are unsure of how to do it yourself, there is now a field of experts willing to help and sketch a plan that will be the most suitable for your company, small or big. To reach your goal may take months or even years but as long as you are trying to reduce your COemissions, you are or the right path. 
  2. Determine operations that need improvement – Understandable some pro-ecological adjustments may seem expensive at first. Say you want to have a low-emission fleet and invest in electric or LNG – powered trucks.  The costs will be high at first but do not get discouraged and try to find other areas within your firm that can benefit your carbon footprint reduction straight away.
  3. Choose and inform your partners about your sustainability goals – Climate change concern all of us.  Share with clients and business partners your sustainability goals, environmental projects and processes you are talking for them to understand the changes your company undertakes. 

How the process of becoming carbon neutral looks for us?

Currently we are involved with Ecobal forest conservation and carbon offsetting project. Together with Ecobal, we are preserving part of the forest that is being revitalized in Radzanów, Poland. Total area that is taken under our patronage equals to 6 ha of forest. For each truck in our fleet, we have invested in 5 Ecobal units, which cost us 10 € per one truck/monthly, to help balancing out our GHG emissions. Moreover, we offset our emissions via Ecobal’s emission certificates. This year we will purchase for all vehicles 600 ECO2certificates, each certificate has the equivalent of 1000 m2 of forest which rotates 1000 kg CO2 into oxygen, this means that currently 600 000 m2 of forest is helping us to become carbon neutral. With this investment we decrease our total carbon footprint on 128 trucks by approximately 15%. Additionally, we also take major steps to change our fleet and we look for technologically advanced systems. At Don Trucking we aspire to change to a low carbon fleet. Now we have 20 LNG-powered trucks and in the near future we expect this number to triple and eventually have low emission fleet entirely. 

Read more about our sustainability goals here.