I'll Take the Sunroof, Rims, and TerraPass, Please


Paying to offset your car's emissions is a contentious issue. To some it's a clever and accessible way to get a little greener. Others see it as a feel-good cop out. The New York Times weighed in on the issue this week and made their opinion clear enough: Gas Guzzlers Find Price of Forgiveness. Of course the issue is more nuanced than that and as the idea of going carbon neutral spreads, the debate will broaden. Ford announced this week that it has joined with TerraPass to educate car buyers about the option of offsetting their greenhouse emissions by investing in renewables. Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury will promote the Greener Miles cross-branding program at their dealerships and on the Web, although Ford "has no plans to run a broad-based advertising campaign for the initiative," according to Green Car CongressTerraPass is one of a host of companies like DriveNeutral, FutureForests, GreenFleet, and Native Energy that let drivers invest in tree planting or alternative energy programs to counterbalance their emissions. TerraPass is a for-profit company that sells emissions credits it earns though domestic wind and methane energy programs, and was featured in the ending credits of Syriana as a suggested way to a greener life, presumably one that doesn't fuel Middle East warfare. For those considering carbon neutrality, EcoBusiness has done a bit of comparison shopping. :: Green Car Congress Update: See also ::More details on the Ford/TerraPass partnership at Grist.