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How Bulb is helping to protect the Gola Rainforest

Bulb supplies 100% carbon neutral gas by supporting carbon reduction projects across the world. So we spent the evening learning how Bulb, together with ClimateCare, is helping to protect the Gola Rainforest in Sierra Leone.

In March we announced that our gas is 100% carbon neutral. We supply 10% green gas and offset the emissions from the rest. With 1.5 million homes in our community, we’re the biggest supplier of green gas in the UK and the largest supplier offering 100% carbon neutral gas to all our members as standard in the UK.

Carbon offsetting is an internationally recognised way for people or companies to balance their emissions. It’s measured in tonnes, and offsetting one tonne of carbon emissions means there’ll be one less tonne in the atmosphere than there otherwise would’ve been.

The Gola project is cutting emissions and supporting local communities

Before the project began, the Gola rainforest in Sierra Leone was unprotected from logging, agriculture and mining. It was shrinking in size as trees were cut down, releasing the carbon dioxide they absorb and store into the atmosphere. 

But since 2011, finance generated from selling carbon offsets has helped to educate local communities. By developing alternative livelihoods, the rainforest is no longer exploited, precious habitats are protected, and CO2 is kept in Gola’s trees.

A big part of the Gola project involves growing cocoa to improve livelihoods.

Eat chocolate, save a rainforest

90% of the population of communities living along the forest edge are dependent on subsistence agriculture for their livelihoods. The Gola project is helping to increase uptake of cocoa farming in these communities, providing valuable income.

Gola exported its first commercial shipment of cocoa last year. You can buy their delicious chocolate bars online. Profits from the chocolate bars are reinvested into the project. 

Team Bulb got together to learn about the project

Team Bulb spent the evening with our partners ClimateCare to find out more. Here are a few fun facts we learned:

  • the Gola rainforest is home to the critically endangered Western Chimpanzee – the only chimpanzee to use wooden spears to hunt other primates

  • there are only 2,000 pygmy hippos left in the rainforest, this species is unique to Gola

  • David Attenborough kick started his career on a documentary filmed in Gola in 1955. You can still watch it on BBC iPlayer.

Team Bulb and ClimateCare spent the evening learning how the Gola project works. And eating a lot of chocolate.

We're having a global impact

Bulb has helped to protect 8,956 hectares of Gola rainforest since March. The same area as 12,103 football pitches.

Our impact doesn’t stop there. Through carbon neutral gas, we’ve offset more than 2 million tonnes of carbon emissions. We’re supporting more carbon reduction projects across the world, including solar and wind farms in India, clean cookstoves in Ghana and Kenya, and biogas projects in China. Each one has an impact that goes beyond reducing emissions.

Offsetting is a way of investing in the transition to a carbon-free future. By partnering with carbon reduction projects around the world, we’re providing them with valuable income, which ensures they can continue.

You can read more about carbon offsets in our help centre. And as always, we’d love to know what you think. Join the conversation in the Bulb Community.