Commission statement on BP Target Neutral programme at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games
The Commission has completed its assurance of BP’s Target Neutral Programme.
BP was appointed by London 2012 as the Olympic and Paralympic Games offset partner for official travel. In addition, BP established a voluntary programme which offered to offset travel related carbon emissions for spectators, London 2012 corporate partners and the wider ‘Olympic family’ such as athletes and country delegations.
The Target Neutral Programme:
“…is an initiative that provides information and tools primarily through a website (www.bptargetneutral.com) but also other channels such as Facebook, to support the reduction of carbon footprints. The information and tools are structured around three topic areas: ‘Reduce, Replace and Neutralise’. Participants are encouraged to reduce their travel emissions, for example by replacing car journeys with public transport, by driving ‘smarter’, driving less and maintaining vehicles better. Participants are also encouraged to consider new fuel-efficient vehicle technologies such as high efficiency engines and improved tyres, or products that may support vehicle efficiency such as “BP Ultimate Fuels” and BP’s “Castrol” lubricants. The ‘Neutralise’ stream encourages participants to offset the carbon emissions from unavoidable travel, and provides the facility to offset”
In the planning of the London 2012 Games, the organisers estimated that the carbon released into the atmosphere by spectator travel to the Olympic and Paralympic Games would be 400,000 tonnes. As the Official Carbon offset partner to the London 2012 Games, BP Target Neutral committed to offsetting all the journeys of those spectators who registered for their free offset on our website. In addition to that, BP also worked with fellow London 2012 sponsors to offset different aspects of their involvement with the Games ranging from the travel related to their hospitality programmes to electricity usage or logistics.
It’s difficult to put into context what 400,000 tonnes of CO2 means in terms of emissions so we’ve put together some more everyday equivalents.. like watching TV, to those you may not do at home, like flying to the edge of space! Explore what also produces that 400,000 tonnes of CO2 by watching the animations below.
London 2012 aimed to create the most sustainable Games possible and Target Neutral was honoured to help make this goal a reality. It was also a fantastic occasion to enable millions of participants to come together to establish a new world record for the largest number of people offsetting their travel carbon footprint to a single event.
Carbon released into the atmosphere by London 2012 spectators was estimated to be the second largest source of carbon related to the Games and two thirds of these spectator emissions — estimated to be several hundred thousand tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions — arose from spectator travel to and from the Games events.
By making the offset to London 2012 accessible and consumer friendly, backed by our robust methodology Target Neutral has created a benchmark for future Games and events to aim for.
Method used to offset spectator travel
The calculation of carbon emissions to be offset from spectator travel to and from the Games was made by calculating an estimate of the carbon emissions for each individual spectator travelling from a particular country and then multiplying this by the number of spectators from that country who register with BP Target Neutral’s London 2012 programme. The methodology used can be further examined in the ERM Methodology Statement.
Method used to set a world record
The record attempt was for the most number of people who participate to offset carbon emissions associated with travel to and from a global sporting event. Hundreds of thousands of people signed up, which has left a legacy that all future Games can follow.
The BP Target Neutral team undertook internet based research as well as research into Guinness Book of World Records to determine whether such a record had been set. Our findings showed that offsetting and other carbon reduction activities were undertaken at the Vancouver and Beijing Games but did not match the criteria of our world record attempt. To the best of our knowledge, this record had not been set.
BP committed to offset the emissions of all ticketed spectators who registered with BP Target Neutral’s London 2012 programme. The cost to offset was met by BP and administered through its not-for-profit programme BP Target Neutral.
Please refer further to Terms and Conditions.
The methodology behind the London 2012 Spectator Offset was independently reviewed by Ernst & Young LLP. For more details see their Assurance Statement.
At last! A short film that explains carbon offsetting simply.
Are you baffled by all the jargon around climate change and carbon footprints? Puzzled by how your effort to neutralise your travel footprint supports the green economy globally? Curious to know what wind farms and pig farms have in common? Want to know how to cut your carbon footprint from travel as well as offset the remainder?
Target Neutral is all about you, me and everyone working together to reduce our carbon footprint. Six outstanding athletes will join us to learn and then show how they do it. Join us – and step into carbon action with Target Neutral.
Two top athletes – Jessica Ennis and Stef Reid – took on an expert eco-driver at a test track recently and came away realising that by eco-driving they could save as much as two tonnes of carbon dioxide and over £1100 from an annual fuel bill.
A World Heptathlon Champion, Jessica Ennis – one of the UK’s most exciting athletes – has joined the Target Neutral programme and will be demonstrating ways in which she can reduce her individual carbon footprint from travel as she prepares for London 2012. See Jessica in action on the track in this short driving Top Tips film.
At Target Neutral, we were delighted to be appointed the Official Carbon Offset Partner to the London 2012 Games.
As a leading not-for-profit provider of services to reduce and neutralise carbon emissions from transport, we worked with the organisers and other London 2012 partners on how Target Neutral helped the aim of creating the most sustainable Games possible.
We offset the entire carbon emissions from 5,000 Games vehicles. We also challenged and supported a group of athletes to reduce and offset their carbon footprint as they prepared for the Games and they shared that experience with London 2012 audiences.
We also offset the carbon footprint of the journey to the Games of millions of ticketholders who registered with us as part of setting a world record for carbon offsetting. That was estimated to be as much as an 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
BP Target Neutral is not for profit, so when you pay to offset your transport emissions, apart from the card payment fee, every penny you invest in carbon offsetting goes directly to projects that prevent or remove CO2 emissions.
BP Target Neutral is a founding member of ICROA, the International Carbon Reduction and Offsetting Alliance.