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BP Launches targetneutral™


23 August 2006, UK’s first mainstream scheme to “neutralise” the CO2 emissions caused by driving
UK drivers can now neutralise the CO2 emissions caused by their driving through targetneutral, a non-profit making partnership initiative from BP that launches today.

Road transport accounts for 22 per cent of UK CO2 emissions. The straight-forward scheme, available at, enables all drivers to take direct action to reduce their individual impact on climate change by funding CO2 reductions generated from environmental projects. allows a driver to calculate the cost of the annual CO2 reduction required to make their vehicle CO2 neutral. An average car, driven 10,000 miles in a year, generates approximately four tonnes of CO2. To neutralise this amount of carbon emissions via will cost around £20 a year.

Four tonnes is the equivalent of filling a medium sized hot air balloon with pure CO2. A huge amount of CO2 could be neutralised if all 40 million drivers in the UK signed up to targetneutral.

The scheme has been developed in consultation with leading NGOs and will be advised and monitored by an independent Advisory and Assurance Panel chaired by Jonathon Porritt, Founder Director of Forum for the Future The Panel comprises Professor David Begg, Chairman of Tube Lines; Rita Clifton, Chairman of Interbrand; Steve Koonin, BP’s Chief Scientist; Peter Mather, BP’s Head of Country, UK; Ed Mayo, CEO National Consumer Council; Charles Secrett, Independent Advisor and former Director Friends of the Earth; Tim Smit, CEO The Eden Project; Professor Kathy Sykes, Professor of Public Engagement in Science & Engineering, Bristol University.

Peter Mather, BP’s Head of Country, UK said: “targetneutral is a practical and straightforward step that BP is taking to enable drivers to help the environment. BP is taking the lead because our extensive research shows that there is a huge consumer demand for such a scheme, but a general feeling from customers that they ’don’t know where to start’.”
Jonathon Porritt, Founder Director, Forum for the Future and Chairman of the targetneutral Advisory and Assurance Panel said: “The scientific consensus on climate change is overwhelming: we need to take radical action now if we are to avoid catastrophic consequences. We all have a responsibility to take up that challenge in our own lives, at home, work or as motorists. For this reason, Forum for the Future is very supportive of what BP is doing through targetneutral. The scheme should help raise awareness of the links between driving and climate change. Helping everyone get more ’carbon literate’ is something that all oil companies will need to commit to in the very near future”.

It’s simple to take direct action. Motorists need to:

1. log on to
2. follow a simple procedure that helps calculate the number of litres of fuel used each year and the CO2 emissions generated
3. the ’calculator’ then determines the financial contribution needed to buy the CO2 reduction to neutralise these emissions.
4. in addition, by registering their Nectar card, they trigger a BP contribution every time they use their card when buying fuel at a BP forecourt

The role of targetneutral in CO2 reduction
targetneutral works best within the REDUCE, REPLACE, NEUTRALISE framework. These are three practical steps that all motorists can take to tackle their personal CO2 emissions.

REDUCE emissions as much as possible by changing attitudes and behaviour to use less fuel and be more fuel efficient. This will save money too.

REPLACE the fuel, oil, tyres and car with more fuel efficient products and models, specifically high efficiency diesel vehicles, when possible.

NEUTRALISE the effects of the CO2 emissions that cannot be reduced or replaced by joining targetneutral.

BP’s role in targetneutral
BP has initiated targetneutral, providing all set-up funding and will meet all ongoing running costs.

All targetneutral members’ money, apart from VAT and payment transaction costs, buys CO2 emission reductions via the purchase of carbon credits. BP takes nothing from the scheme members’ contribution.

BP will make a direct contribution to targetneutral when motorists who are signed up to the scheme register and use their Nectar Card when they buy fuel at a BP forecourt.

The BP contribution is calculated per litre and is up to 10p per tank for regular fuels and up to 20p per tank for lower CO2-emitting BP Ultimate fuels. BP has 1 million customers per day in the UK.

The projects
The money generated by targetneutral goes to a portfolio of CO2 reduction projects including alternative and renewable energy. Replacing traditional energy production methods with low CO2 emitting alternatives, is one way CO2 reductions are achieved. Initially there are five projects including a biomass energy plant in Himachal Pradesh; a wind farm in Karnataka, India and an animal waste management and methane capture program in Mexico. As targetneutral grows, more projects will be added.

Strict procedures are followed to ensure the projects’ integrity. These are modelled on those created by the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) for emissions reduction projects developed under the Kyoto Protocol. All project activity is overseen by the targetneutral Advisory and Assurance Panel.


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