Carbon offsetting is getting easier... but does it work?

For many of us the airport departure lounge has become an essential part of the journey (where else would you stock up on suntan lotion/sunglasses/Bacardi, etc?) but if the latest carbon offsetting scheme at San Francisco airport is a hit, you'll soon be able to buy a clear(ish) concience too.

The general idea (it's still in development) is that you will go to a kiosk at the airport, key in where you are flying to, and pay the appropriate amount on your credit card. Seventy percent of your money will go to carbon-reduction projects, and 30 percent to 3Degrees, the company behind the project. It's a nice idea, but does carbon offsetting really help the environment - or just those enterprising people at 3Degrees?

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