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Carbon Footprints Need Annual Updates

Starbucks has calculated the carbon footprint of its North American locations only once, in 2003, when it had approximately 3,700 stores in North America, Forbes reports. It now has 6,281 U.S. company-owned stores and more than 1500 international locations.

At that time, Starbucks emitted 295,000 tons of carbon into the atmosphere. Starbucks decided to leave out an additional 81,000 tons of carbon dioxide it emitted by transporting coffee materials and disposing of solid waste.

That 295,000-ton figure gives Starbucks a small carbon footprint, among a list of about 1,000 companies compiled by the Carbon Disclosure Project. Near the top of the list is American Electric Power with 146.5 million tons of carbon emissions. Next in line are oil and gas companies Royal Dutch/Shell and British Petroleum with 105 million tons and 92 million tons.

Comparatively, General Electric’s 12.4 million ton footprint makes it a medium-size emitter. The smallest carbon emitters weighed in at a few thousand tons. Most of the lower footprints belong to insurance companies, retailers and banks.

The EPA asks companies to check their numbers annually. Both Intel and Sun Microsystems, for example, do just that.

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One thought on “Carbon Footprints Need Annual Updates

  1. Carbon footprints won’t change under the scheme of carbon offset purchasing. I’ll give Starbucks credit, because they don’t have the individual site footprint, to install anything but solar, and it would be difficult to justify. But the rest of the corporate players that are purchasing carbon credits, and bragging about it, need to know that soon, consumers will know this is just green publicity, and they will be offended by it. When is someone of stature going to come forward and say, checkbook environmentalism doe not reduce you carbon footprint? Carbon doesn’t magically disappear when you purchase carbon offsets, it just provides soap box time, opportunity to tell the world how wonderful you are, look at me, holding a handfull of carbon offset credits in front of your smokestack, give me a break. Companies should only be allowed to purchase carbon offsets, that have actually installed renewables, like geothermal and solar. This is such a farse, American’s are so gullible, reduction of carbon has taken a back seat to itself, carbon offsets are a very dangerous misleading fine example of our ignorance in renewables. And the public is onboard,hook,line and sinker.

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