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I could not stop laughing when I read this item in the San Francisco Chronicle, made that much more funny because it involves San Francisco liberals and the “perfect people for a perfect planet.”

According to the Chronicle …

S.F. fliers may pay their way in carbon usage

“Environmentally conscious travelers flying out of San Francisco International Airport will soon be able to assuage their guilt and minimize the impact of their air travel by buying certified carbon offsets at airport kiosks.”

“The experimental program, scheduled to start this spring, would make SFO the first airport in the nation - possibly the world - to offer fliers the opportunity to purchase carbon offsets.”

" ‘We'd like people to stop and consider the impacts of flying,’ said Steve McDougal, executive vice president for 3Degrees, a San Francisco firm that sells renewable-energy and carbon-reduction investments and is teaming up with the airport and the city on the project. ‘Obviously, people need to fly sometimes. No one expects them to stop, but they should consider taking steps to reduce their impacts.’"

Consider the impact of dumping one drop of water in the San Francisco bay … now calculate the impact of this meaningless act on raising the sea level of the Pacific Ocean.

“San Francisco's Airport Commission has authorized the program, which will involve a $163,000 investment from SFO, but is still working out the details with 3Degrees. Because of that, McDougal said, he can't yet discuss specifics, such as the cost to purchase carbon offsets and what programs would benefit from travelers' purchases.”

Are the residents of San Francisco or the State of California putting up any taxpayer money for this project? What programs will benefit – is this the latest business model for charitable giving? How much of the money earned will be used for executive salaries at 3Degrees?

“But the general idea, officials said, is that a traveler would approach a kiosk resembling the self-service check-in stations used by airlines, then punch in his or her destination. The computer would calculate the carbon footprint and the cost of an investment to offset the damage. The traveler could then swipe a credit card to help save the planet. Travelers would receive a printed receipt listing the projects benefiting from their environmental largesse.”

Whoops, this is not a charity … but a profit making enterprise. Great shades of Al Gore!

The carbon offsets are not tax deductible, said Krista Canellakis, a 3Degrees spokeswoman.

The perfect scam: nothing more than a piece of paper …

"While the carbon offsets purchased at kiosks can't be seen or touched, they are an actual product with a specific environmental claim whose ownership is transferred at the time of purchase," she said.

I wonder if a lawsuit could be used to make them prove their claim that the purchaser’s action will actually save the planet by mitigating global warming?

“Mike McCarron, airport spokesman, said the projects offered will be chosen by the mayor's office, in conjunction with 3Degrees, from a list certified by the city's Environment Department. Airport Director John Martin told the commission that projects could include renewable energy ventures in developing countries, agriculture and organic waste capture, coal mine methane capture, and sustainable forestry.”

Considering that the people who will control the investment of this money may derive considerable financial benefits from their actions, I wonder what form of oversight might prevent misuse of funds gathered using what amounts to an automated solicitation for funds on public property?

“Nathan Ballard, a spokesman for Mayor Gavin Newsom, said a portion of each offset purchase would go to the San Francisco Carbon Fund, which supports local projects such as energy-efficiency programs and solar panel installations for low-income housing, as well as efforts to convert waste oils into biodiesel fuels.”

Of course, the city of the politically correct wants their piece of the action which could be directed by the politicians for their own benefit.

Suggests? You mean they really don’t know …

“The cost of offsets for SFO travelers is still being negotiated, McDougal said, but figures on the company's Web-based ‘carbon calculator’ suggest that a two-hour trip uses about 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per person, and the cost to offset that would be about $4. Offsetting a trip to Europe would cost $36.”

And who is doing this negotiation? Who is representing the traveler? And what factors are being built into the costs?

"’It's definitely not going to double your ticket or anything,’ he said. ‘It's going to end up being a small percentage of your total airfare.’"

Where is the competitive bidding that would insure that the consumer was getting the best deal possible for their money?

“Under the agreement, the airport will provide the kiosks and 3Degrees will supply the software and the certified carbon offsets being sold and will operate the program. Kiosks will be placed throughout the airport, with locations at the customer service desk in Terminal 3 and two wings of the International Terminal. 3Degrees will get 30 percent of each purchase, with the rest going to carbon-reduction projects. The agreement calls for a one-year program, with a possible extension.”

"’The carbon kiosks will not only reduce global warming,’ Ballard said, ‘they will serve an educational function. It's something interesting to do while you're killing time at the airport.’"

“Given the innovative nature of the venture, airport officials said they don't expect 3Degrees will turn a profit - at least not at the outset. McDougal said it's impossible to predict how many passengers will want to make what is essentially a voluntary contribution to compensate for the impacts of their air travel. But he hopes the program takes off.”

Like everything political in San Francisco …

" ‘Hopefully, it will be successful,’ he said. ‘But if we just have a lot of people stop and read the information and think about it, that's something we've accomplished.’"

What can YOU do?

Beware of pilot programs conducted in liberal democrat enclaves such as San Francisco. For it might only be a matter of time that this program morphs into a carbon tax on all travelers, the kiosks are abandoned and the tax is applied directly to all tickets; and not on a voluntary basis.

Beware of entrepreneurs capitalizing on the subject of global warming. It is the perfect scam – nobody will be able to see results for hundreds of years. In the meantime, your hard earned money may be re-distributed outside of the United States where it will, in all likelihood, be squandered or stolen by corrupt politicians and their special interest friends.

Demand proof of program efficacy before parting with your hard-earned money; that is, if you are so-inclined to support the “perfect people for a perfect planet.”

-- steve

Quote of the Day: “Global Warming: Something for nothing, money for free.”  -- steve

--CJ's US History Work

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

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S.F. fliers may pay their way in carbon usage


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