Delegates may participate in this important sustainability effort through a voluntary payment of US$100
to the Green Pilgrim Jerusalem Carbon Offset Fund
CLIMATE CHANGE AND THE NEED FOR ACTION
Climate change is a growing public concern and for the foreseeable future, will remain a fundamental long-term challenge. It is caused by a build-up in our atmosphere of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions from many of our everyday activities, such as driving, and heating our homes and offices. These emissions are creating a heat-trapping blanket around the Earth that is raising the temperature of our planet. The problem is that, even though the human causes of climate change are clear and the negative impacts are becoming ever more apparent, economies throughout the world remain heavily dependent on burning fossil fuels and other activities that produce greenhouse gas emissions.
Shifting away from the use of fossil fuels and other practices that are causing our climate to deteriorate requires strong, concerted government leadership and action to set ﬁrm, science-based targets for reductions and to put in place policies and regulations that place a price on carbon to enable our economies to transition to clean sources of energy.
But we can all make an important contribution at the grassroots level. There are many actions that everyone can take to reduce their net climate impact – at home and at work – to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from everyday activities. Just a few examples include driving and ﬂying less, purchasing energy-efficient appliances, making buildings more efficient, and using renewable energy where available.
To deal with the emissions that remain after these reduction efforts, (called a “carbon footprint”), and to demonstrate leadership on climate change, many individuals, businesses, non-governmental organizations, government agencies and others are turning to carbon offsets in order to take responsibility for emissions that cannot be reduced, to promote innovation by supporting clean-energy projects and to demonstrate leadership on climate change solutions. Carbon Offsetting is essentially a service and market-based tool that has been developed to tackle climate change resulting from human activity: the purchaser pays someone else to create greenhouse gas reductions on his or her behalf in order to become as Carbon Neutral as possible.
A Green Pilgrim Jerusalem Carbon Offset Fund is being established in conjunction with the GPJ Symposium as a response to the harmful emissions generated by air travel to the conference. As a means of taking responsibility for lowing our carbon footprint, our Symposium commits to:
With these funds, the Green Pilgrim Jerusalem Carbon Offset Fund commits to funding locally-initiated, collaborative projects. The qualified projects fall in three categories: improved energy efficiency, renewable energy, and carbon sequestration.
Energy efficiency: Efforts promoting changes in individual behavior (carpooling, reduced electricity use), and green purchase incentives.
Renewable energy: Installation of solar, wind, geothermal, or biomass energy systems.
Carbon sequestration: Reforestation, tree planting, sustainable agriculture initiatives and landfill gas recovery systems that avoid, reduce, remove, or destroy harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
To allow our donors to evaluate quality and other offset purchase criteria, Green Pilgrim Jerusalem commits to being highly transparent about our offsets and operations. Via our website, information will be published about our services, organizational structure, contact details, staff and executive team, and the proportion of our offset price that goes to overheads. With respect to the offsets we are selling, Green Pilgrim Jerusalem will make available information about our projects. When selling a portfolio of offsets, Green Pilgrim Jerusalem will be clear about which projects are in the portfolio and what percentage of the portfolio is allocated to each project.
Ideally, delegates will take home ideas about how they can green their communities around the world and Jerusalem will serve as a Green Model