Hidden Earth 2023

Should the GPF mandate cave expedition carbon offsetting?

45 minute Lecture|Rob Watson, Wookey

Should the GPF mandate cave expedition carbon offsetting?


It is imperative that international cave exploration adapts to the ongoing climate emergency by better considering the carbon emissions associated with it. Although there is willing among UK expeditions to reduce their carbon footprints (see: https://ukcaving.com/board/index.php?threads/carbon-offsetting-for-expeditions.30925), there seems to be some uncertainty about the most effective way of doing so in all cases.

To this end, the Ghar Parau Foundation (GPF), which has provided over £125k of funding to over 200 expeditions in the last 15 years, are currently looking at developing a new aspect of their application process to ensure that expeditions who minimise their carbon use are recognised for this effort. This session provides a forum for discussion of the 'expedition carbon issue', in which we will quickly present the facts around the environmental effects of international caving, and then suggest some possible ways for GPF to fairly and tangibly reduce the emissions associated with the expeditions it funds. We hope that many cavers will join to debate these issues, as this will not only ensure that the issue remains a priority for GPF, but also allow a fuller and more productive consultation with the UK caving community on this crucial issue.