Graduation Gifts: Offset your graduate's carbon footprint

carbon foot printDo you have an eco-conscience high school grad walking to pomp and circumstance this spring? Maybe a patchouli and Birkenstock loving college grad ready to wrestle corporate America for our nations future? What better way to show them your support and give them a graduation gift they will remember, than erasing the carbon footprint they have left over their short life. Worldchanging.com in coordination with TerraPass, a carbon offsetting company, have teamed up to offer a clean slate gift program in which a donor can buy the carbon offsets to essentially displace the carbon footprint for graduates from high school through working adults.

The program is not cheap, but if you want to make a difference going green this way is likely to make a bigger difference than a pack of CFL light bulbs for the graduates first apartment. To offset the carbon footprint of a high school graduate, $6,000 in offsets would need to be purchased. For a college graduate the cost would be $7,500 and for a working adult the price jumps up to $25,000! The prices are high but even if you can't afford to offset your favorite grad's carbon footprint for life you can purchase offsets in smaller amounts by donating to Terrapass in honor of the graduate.I don't see anyone in my family opting for this as a graduation present. Never mind how eco-conscience anyone in my extended family is; if one of my relatives dropped $7,500 on offsetting my carbon footprint rather than my student loan debt I would question their financial aptitude. In either case, high school or college, unless the student had a full ride or had parents who paid for the full 4 years of college I fail to see how this would be the best use of money. Call me an environment hater if you want but giving the gift of green towards a college or trade education is a better use of money in my opinion. If you still want to make an impression, have the graduate promise to make donations to an organization like Terrapass upon graduation or make taking public transit for college and the first few years of graduation a requirement of the gift!

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