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Carbon Neutral vs Net Zero: What’s the Difference?

The two buzzwords that are ushering in the new climate-conscious age: Carbon neutral and Net zero!

Across the globe companies big and small are all rushing to claim one, two, or both. In the coming years, having accreditation of being Carbon Neutral or a Net Zero business will be worn as a badge of honour or potentially be a requirement for operation.

Since the start of 2023, Heat From Air has been at the front of the transition to sustainable living, away from fossil fuels, something we are incredibly proud of!

As these terms move further into the public consciousness, questions will start to be asked about the difference between the two and what that means for the future. So, Carbon Neutral vs Net Zero? Is there a difference and how can you learn which products are the best for the environment?

What is Carbon Neutral?

To be Carbon Neutral, a company or individual needs to balance the carbon dioxide they release into the atmosphere, with the amount of carbon dioxide they remove from the atmosphere.

Being carbon neutral doesn’t necessarily mean a company isn’t burning fossil fuels and creating greenhouse gases, it just means they are actively doing enough to offset their contribution. Planting trees or investing in carbon capture technology is one of the ways companies can move towards becoming carbon neutral.

Carbon neutrality means striking a balance between emitting carbon and absorbing carbon from the atmosphere in carbon sinks.

A Carbon sink is any system that absorbs more carbon than it emits.

The main natural carbon sinks are soil, forests, and oceans. Artificial sinks, such as storing carbon deep underground or in building materials are unable to work at the necessary scale to stop global warming.

Natural carbon sinks are key to our survival, it’s why ending acts such as deforestation is imperative.

Carbon neutral vs net zero

What is Net Zero?

Net zero is similar in principle to carbon neutrality but is expanded in scale. To achieve net zero, it means going beyond offsetting carbon and reduction, net zero requires the total elimination of all greenhouse gases being emitted into the atmosphere. Not just limited to carbon dioxide but also methane, nitrous oxide, and other hydrofluorocarbons.

Net Zero is increasingly used to describe a broader and more comprehensive worldwide commitment to decarbonisation and climate action. Around 140 countries have pledged to reach net zero by 2050 – including the UK, covering up to 90% of global emissions. China, the biggest producer of CO2 aims to reach net zero by 2060 and India, 2070 respectively.

Net Zero has taken to the forefront in its importance because, in theory, this is the state at which global warming stops.

The UK has a legal requirement to reach net zero by 2050.

Carbon neutral vs net zero

Slowing Emissions is Essential for Reaching Net Zero Goal.

Quickly lowering emissions is the gateway to Net Zero. In order to achieve the net zero goal – No emissions must be released into the atmosphere.

To keep warming to 1.5 degrees, countries must cut emissions by at least 45 percent compared to 2010 levels by 2030 – a year that is creeping up very quickly!

Heat From Air’s Heating Solutions Help Homeowners Transition Away From Fossil Fuels.

As a country and wider planet, we are not currently on track to reach net zero. Global temperatures need to be limited to rising by only 1.5C to stop irreversible damage. Currently, they are set to rise 2.7C and it’s not good enough.

Emissions still need to be slashed and with domestic heating accounting for up to 14% of emissions, the transition desperately needs to accelerate.

There is progress being made and the public is increasingly supportive of measures to limit harmful gases and transition to renewable, carbon-free sources of energy and heating, even if they require lifestyle changes!

With the UK government regularly updating and improving the boiler upgrade scheme now means that most customer can get £7,500 off a brand-new heating system when swapping from a fossil fuel system. Find out more here!

As always, all of Heat From Air’s installs offer a viable and alternative solution to fossil fuels and will help contribute to the UK’s wider goal of becoming Net Zero by 2050.

There will always be a product you can find to suit your home thanks to our free heating survey. Whether it’s a new heat pump, underfloor heating radiators or thermostat, starting your personal net zero journey can begin today.

If you want to take advantage of renewable heating, just contact the friendly team at Heat From Air and we will handle everything for you. Follow our journey on LinkedIn and Instagram too for handy tips and tricks.

Your green future starts here!

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