For just $50, stars like Julia Roberts can offset their $10,0000-an-hour plane rides. Photo By X17online.com/ CP Photo
Q: How much pollution is created by all these celebrities flying to town for the Film Festival?
A: Now, now, let's not be judgmental. How do you expect the Jolie-Pitts to save the world, juggle French lessons for six children and grace film fests around the globe with their presence if they have to queue up for coach?
Though I can't forecast how many A-listers will be showing up on luxury Cessnas, I can tell you that an hour on a private jet burns up as much fuel as a whole year of driving the average car. And a trip from L.A.? That'll spew five times as much CO2 as someone settling for the free bubbly in first class on a regular plane.
Of course, even celebrities are suffering from the rising price of fuel. Ask Sean Puffy Combs. Just last week the rapper/producer/actor wannabe posted a YouTube video adroitly kvetching that "gas prices are too motherfucking high" and said he was forced to give up the $250,000 in monthly gas bills unless some Saudi brothers and sisters could please send him some oil for his jet.
For those who aren't ready to share toilets with the common man, there are a few ways to lighten the load. First, you can offset. But don't do what Chris Martin of Coldplay did to counter the 100,000 miles he logs in his private jet (according to Private Jets Magazine). Martin planted 10,000 mango trees that never got watered. The poor trees died. Maybe that's where he got the inspiration for his "and it was all yellow" lyrics.
Stratos Jet Charter Services has more of a sure thing going now that it's hooked up with offsetter TerraPass. Stratos's "Eco-Jet Charter Program" lets you fund wind farms, alternative energy research and conservation projects that "help to mitigate the impact of private aviation on the environment." Bonus: you can offset 20,000 miles of flying in that $10,000-an-hour jet for the low, low price of just $50. Now, that's a steal.
If that still doesn't ease your suffocating conscience (and tightening wallet), there's always jet-sharing. It's sort of like AutoShare for the rich and glamorous. Sure, celebs have sometimes been known to carpool (like David Beckham and George Clooney bumming a ride from L.A. to a New York gala on Giorgio Armani's sky limo). But now a jet brokerage company out of London has recently set up a private club for those who don't want to shoulder the cost of owning a plane solo.
This doesn't really force you to fly less; it just means that you don't have to get all John Travolta about it and own five separate jets. (Publicists take note: landing a 150-person plane in Ireland with no one else on board is a sure-fire way to draw activist attention.)
To counter all the private shopping jaunts to Milan, what you really need is a good PR boost. Chief Executive Air just launched a Fly For A Cure charity jet program where a percentage from each flight goes to your non-profit of choice.
All right, so maybe none of these options actually reduces the gargantuan greenhouse gas footprint of the bold and beautiful. If you want to take on a small supporting role and help offset your favourite movie star's gas problem, leave the Hummer at home and take transit to your TIFF screenings. Oh, and would you mind asking the theatre manager not to crank the AC so high we could re-enact Happy Feet? Thanks.
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