Climate Action Offsetter: Road Scholar

May 24, 2024

What is your organization’s mission?

At not-for-profit Road Scholar, our mission is to inspire adults to learn, discover and travel. Our learning adventures engage expert instructors, provide extraordinary access, and stimulate discourse and friendship among people for whom learning is the journey of a lifetime.

What are the key principles and goals of your sustainability program?

As stewards of our planet, we are acutely aware of the urgent realities of climate change and its profound impact on the places we hold dear. At Road Scholar, safeguarding our global classroom for future generations is paramount. That’s why we’re charting a course toward sustainability that is guided by several key principles: reduce our impact where we can; prioritize partners who care about the environment; and promote environmental stewardship, social responsibility and economic sustainability on our programs.


How did you choose the right offset projects for your company?

We aspired to create a diverse portfolio of projects to fund, both geographically and by the types of projects, which include rainforest preservation in Brazil, methane gas recapture in Florida, wind energy in India, forest preservation in Alaska and more.

How has utilizing offsets benefited your organization / your clients / your community?

In surveys to our participants, they have noted climate change is their top concern, so knowing Road Scholar is doing what it can to protect the environment is important to them.

What’s next for your organization’s climate and environmental goals?

While we have taken strides to offset the carbon footprint of our air travel in recent years (and will continue to do that), we are deepening our commitment to protecting the environment and will ingrain these values into our organizational culture. From reducing waste to forging partnerships with eco-conscious partners, our goal for the future is to integrate sustainable practices into every aspect of what we do. Our team is working to minimize our environmental footprint – whether it’s a reduction in single-use plastics or an emphasis on locally sourced cuisine. But our journey extends beyond environmental initiatives; it encompasses the social wellbeing of the communities we visit as well. By placing equal importance on people and planet, we maximize our impact, ensuring no one is left behind.

How do you incorporate sustainability into your programs?

We do offer some learning adventures with sustainability education built into the itinerary, like our Costa Rica program that that visits an agronomic research and education centers for an expert-led botanical garden exploration, and our Florida kayaking program where participants meet an expert lecturer-biologist-ecologist for a lecture on aquifer sustainability followed by a hike of a state preserve that plays an important role in supporting ecosystem and watershed health. And we are working on developing more programs that support continued education in agriculture, conservation, natural resources, and living sustainably – including offsetting travelers’ emissions.

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