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San Diegans Offset Air Travel With Carbon Credits

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Now San Diego air travelers can go to an airport coffee shop and get a carbon offset sticker with their cappuccino.

Carbon emissions and greenhouse gases are two phrases we hear a lot about these days - and mostly in a negative way.

Now, comes something that hopes to have a positive impact on both those climate changers. It's been launched by the San Diego International Airport, and it's called the Good Traveler program.

The goal of the nonprofit pilot project is to encourage sustainable travel by allowing passengers to curb the environmental impact of their journeys.

Paul Manasjan is with the San Diego County Airport Authority. He said the program is designed to offset the carbon footprint created by air travel.

"For one dollar you can purchase a Good Traveler tag, which will offset 500 air miles or 200 road miles of emissions from your travel," he said.

The stickers are currently sold at Ryan Brothers Coffee, which has a coffee shop in each of Lindbergh's terminals.

The money, Manasjan said, will go to carbon offset programs such as a reforestation project in Northern California, wind farms and a Colorado River Delta restoration project.

The Good Traveler pilot program will run at the San Diego airport through the end of the year. Manasjan said it's hoped the project will then be expanded to include other airports in other cities.

San Diego International Airport was the first major airport in the nation to adopt a formal sustainability policy.

In 2014 it also became the first U.S. airport to sign the Climate Declaration, a call to action that urges federal and state officials to seize the economic opportunity of addressing climate change.

Disclosure: Good Traveler offered pledge gifts for the KPBS Fall Fundraising Campaign.

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