Flexcar Pledges to Become First U.S. Company to Offset 100% of Emissions

Flexcar Pledges to Become First U.S. Company to Offset 100% of Emissions

Flexcar, a provider of car-sharing programs, has committed to offsetting 100% of the emissions it generates. Through a partnership with the nonprofit American Forests, Flexcar has pledged ensure that enough trees are planted every year in areas where the company operates to completely negate the effect of greenhouse gasses attributed to automobile exhaust from the company's fleet of shared vehicles.

"Since its founding, Flexcar has been committed to reducing emissions, which is why our entire fleet is made up of environmentally-friendly vehicles like our Super Ultra Low Emission Honda Civic Hybrids," said Lance Ayrault, president and CEO of Flexcar. "This new partnership takes that promise a step further and makes both Flexcar and American Forests stronger as a result."

This year-round program will be supplemented further by Flexcar's outreach to its more than 15,000 members during the month of October, which the company is terming "Flexcar Global ReLeaf(R) Month" in honor of the American Forests' program of the same name. During that time, Flexcar will encourage its members in Washington, Oregon, and California to make personal commitments to American Forests. A special program for Washington, D.C. area members will be conducted in 2004.

Many members are already doing their part. Recent Flexcar research shows that roughly 60 percent of members have either sold or decided not to purchase a vehicle because of the program, thus removing thousands of vehicles and all their emissions from circulation.

"We are proud to have Flexcar join us as a sponsor of our restoration tree planting projects," said Deborah Gangloff, executive director of American Forests. "Flexcar's initiative to become carbon-neutral is a giant step forward, and we encourage other companies to follow their lead."

Flexcar provides its members with on-demand access to a fleet of low-emission vehicles, including gas/electric hybrids, pickup trucks and minivans located throughout five major cities, including Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, San Diego, and the Washington, D.C. metro area. Members reserve the vehicles for hourly use with Flexcar covering the cost of the car, gas, parking, insurance, and maintenance.

Flexcar launched its Seattle operations in 2000, and has since won numerous awards and commendations for reducing congestion, air pollution, and energy use, and increasing use of public transit while contributing to sustainable communities.