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Brief Published: 1 Feb 2021

New App Calculates Personal Travel Carbon Emissions


With 53% of global travellers saying they want to travel more sustainably in future as a result of the pandemic (Booking.com, 2020), the need for tools that help facilitate greener travel have never been more relevant. Enter US start-up Aerial, which has launched an app that helps globetrotters calculate their personal travel carbon footprint.

Users can sync the app with their Gmail account, where the tool scans for any emails regarding flight reservations, train tickets and taxi-hailing receipts. It then calculates the total carbon emissions for these trips and suggests how much they should cough up in carbon offsets at $10 per ton of carbon. This can be retroactively calculated for past trips and fixed periods – allowing users to compare their emissions over the years. They can pay via the app, with the money going to environmental causes.

All offset payments are currently being funnelled into conserving forest land in Northern California since, according to the brand, preserving mature forest land sequesters more carbon than reforestation projects. There are plans to add further choices further down the line. The app also offers sustainability tips and tricks to help users reduce their emissions going forward.

The app has its limitations (it doesn’t account for personal car journeys and other day-to-day activities). However, its founders told US business publication Fast Company that they hope it will provide an easy way for consumers to begin to take accountability for their own eco impact.

For more on how consumers intend to prioritise the environment through their travel choices, read Roadmaps to Recovery: Travel & Hospitality Futures and 2021: Look Ahead – Travel & Hospitality.