In an effort to make the Barcelona Congress a carbon neutral event, IUCN is making a call to all IUCN members and partners to propose one or more projects from which certified carbon offsets can be purchased after the event.
IUCN is making every effort to ensure that the IUCN World Conservation Congress is an environment-friendly and sustainable event by minimizing our direct and indirect impacts and leaving a positive legacy to the city of Barcelona. Although many measures are being taken to encourage a more efficient use of resources (e.g reduction in the use of paper, water, electricity, plastic materials, etc.); the Congress will inevitably generate greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.
Air travel to and from Barcelona is probably the most significant source of greenhouse gas emissions associated with the Congress. In order to compensate for these and other emissions arising from the event, IUCN is collecting voluntary contributions from delegates in support of the Barcelona Carbon Offset Fund (BCOF). In addition, IUCN will offset the emissions generated by staff, Council members and sponsored delegates.
When registering, participants are invited to pay an offset fee for their travel and participation in the Congress. The fee is based upon the market price for premium carbon offsets, and on an estimate of average GHG emissions both on-site and arising from return air travel to Barcelona from different parts of the world. In an effort to simplify the process, the organizers propose a short-haul fee of €15 for delegates traveling from Europe or the Mediterranean, or a long-haul fee of €45 for delegates traveling from other regions.
A similar plan was implemented to offset almost 4000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, based on voluntary contributions from about one-third of delegates during the 2004 Bangkok Congress. The funds collected in Bangkok were used to buy offsets from Carbon Neutral in two offset projects in India (wind power and cogeneration ).
Assuming a level of participation and attendance in Barcelona slightly higher than that of the 2004 Congress, the organizers anticipate the purchase of approximately 5’000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent following the event.
Proposals are being sought from IUCN members and partners for suitable offset projects and should be submitted by email to the Barcelona Congress Executive Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org by no later than 15 July 2008 and need to be submitted following the template provided here.