Aviation industry companies often invest in forestry and nature-based offsets that, despite their popularity, have been shown to be ineffective in reducing carbon emissions. As a result, airlines such as united and delta have shifted their focus toward decarbonization.
The International Civil Aviation Organization or ICAO, has implemented a global climate scheme that mandates airlines purchase offsets that meet the organization’s eligibility criteria, suggesting these offsets will remain the predominant way for the industry to address emissions until at least the 2040s.
But experts suggest that the money being spent on questionable offsets could have a greater impact when invested in other areas such as accelerating the transition to more sustainable fuels and investing in developing decarbonization technologies. However, sustainable aviation fuels are expensive and in limited supply, making them difficult to transition to for decarbonization.