Climate change and damage to the environment in general can be traced back to the psychological fact that man is better able to assess the consequences of his actions, which he experiences immediately, locally, than those he turns in time, perhaps only in the news. There are very few deformed people who would intentionally and intentionally destroy their environment by plowing a bulldozer in a nature reserve. Most of us leave the lamp on, want to order something from the internet, cheer up a promotional outfit, don’t read palm oil on peanut butter in small print, or just can’t resist a super cheap plane ticket if we’re planning a vacation.
Climate change is difficult to solve because, despite the fact that we know the connection between our consumption and news from tropical storms, holiday memories and desertified topsoil, we do not feel or perceive it deeply enough. Today, environmentalists, psychologists, and companies committed to change have also realized that progress can only be achieved through increased awareness and, last but not least, the development of simple and clear solutions. Opportunities must be presented to a growing group of conscious consumers who can immediately do something important to alleviate the global problem. All of this must be done jointly, by governments, economic actors and individuals, to take action against climate change.
One such obvious, simple but high-impact solution is the carbon neutrality service launched by Shell Hungary at the beginning of May. The essence of this is that refueling companies at the company’s filling stations can buy HUF 6 per liter of fuel. carbon neutralization service, which helps offset the environmental impact of refueling. Shell will use the proceeds to manage environmental and nature conservation programs around the world, to protect and build carbon sinks and carbon sinks. Shell already supports such activities in many parts of the world, protecting existing environments such as swamps, grasslands and forests in North and South America, Africa and especially Asia, and actively developing new ones – for example, by planting trees.
The global program extending from Peru to Indonesia is called Nature-Based Solutions and aims to conserve and build greenhouse gas sequestration zones. To this end, and to support the financing of the program, the Carbon Neutrality Service was created, which is not only a donation, but also an outreach program that allows joint action. It is an initiative in which the consumer is not only a passive player but also an active customer in decision making who is invited to collaborate. All of this serves the principle that climate change cannot be stopped without the active participation of consumers.
It is no coincidence that the service, which has already been launched in 16 countries, has become very popular very quickly. Buyers at gas stations have been particularly receptive to the programme, which is available in Canada, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, among other countries. The positive reception of the service is indicated by the fact that with the help of the programme, Shell customers have so far been able to neutralize more than 4 million tons of greenhouse gases, which corresponds to the amount stored in 8 million trees. This represents about 15 percent of Hungary’s total annual fuel sales.
Hungary is the first country in Central and Eastern Europe where Shell provides full service – for both corporate and individual customers. While the service costs HUF 6 for individual customers, refueling companies pay HUF 4.5 + VAT. It is important to note that the purchase of a carbon neutralization service is not mandatory, so it is not a question of increasing the cost of fuel. The decision is always up to the buyer, he decides whether to undertake a HUF 240 40-liter refueling to offset the carbon emissions of his car.
In addition to all this, Shell has already taken several steps in Hungary to achieve the company’s ambitious goal of becoming a carbon-neutral company by 2050, in line with changing societal needs. They are significantly supporting the spread of electric mobility by installing electric chargers at charging stations, and are increasingly turning their facilities on renewable energy and offering carbon-free lubricants to their customers.