by Michael dEstries
Categories: People.

snipshot_bxael4wvw6h.jpgOne little know fact (at least to me) was that this year’s Academy Awards did not feature any type of luxury gift bag. The Academy actually voted to end the practice in favor of other options that did not portray such excess. One of the alternative ‘thankyous’ offered this year was one year of carbon-neutral living by offset leader, TerraPass. The gift was given to each celebrity presenter at the Oscars. From the press release,

“In addition to personal conservation, many individuals now choose to balance out the emissions they can’t eliminate by funding reductions in greenhouse gases elsewhere. This year’s Oscar presenters will have their carbon footprints balanced with a gift of 100,000 lbs of greenhouse gas reductions from carbon offset retailer TerraPass.

TerraPass will provide the greenhouse gas reductions by funding clean energy and efficiency projects such as wind farms in the Midwest. To commemorate the emissions reductions, glass and pottery designer, Simon Pearce will provide each presenter with a beautiful hand blown glass sculpture. Long a champion of clean energy, Simon Pearce fuels its Vermont-based glass furnace with hydroelectric power.”

The gift also acknowledges that celebrities have a higher carbon footprint than others; which is great to see factored into the donation. Several celebrities, including green favorite, Ed Belgey Jr. championed the idea. “TerraPass is a great way for all of us to get involved in the global warming challenge,” says Ed, six-time Emmy Award nominated
actor and star of the new hit eco-reality show “Living with Ed.”

A great idea–and an amazing 180 degree turn from last year’s tax nightmare gift bags. For the first time ever, there are now more celebrities walking driving around Hollywood completely carbon-neutral. How long before this catches on with others? How about next year extending the invitation to the entire Oscar community? (With sizeable sponsorship, of course. The amount of people they offset to begin with was quite generous.) Nice job Terrapass — and kudos to the Academy for promoting the service and idea.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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