How Softies Supports Local Communities
At Softies we’re passionate about ethical sustainability. Our cycling holidays and itineraries have been specially created with the local...Read more
At Cycling for Softies, we’re passionate about travel and the natural beauty of the regions we visit. Climate change threatens to throw nature out of balance, which is why we have embarked on our carbon labelling project. By identifying the carbon we emit, we can understand and see clearly what needs to change to protect the environments we love.
We’ve partnered with ecollective to carbon score all our tours. Cycling is inherently a sustainable mode of transport, and we believe it’s important that all aspects of our cycle tours are sustainable. Read on to learn how we set about labelling our carbon emissions and our plans for the future.
Our clients deserve to know the environmental impact of their holiday. That’s why we’ve measured the carbon emissions of our company, and why we’ve shared the total carbon footprint of each of our cycling holidays. You can see the impact of each tour on our tour pages; just look for the number in green. Almost everything has a carbon footprint, and we want to be transparent about ours.
Measuring our carbon footprint and committing to reducing it is the most significant action we can take to reduce our environmental impact. Whilst we believe our products are much more sustainable than many holiday types, they still have an impact on the planet. This message is to tell you that each year, we are working to make sure each of our products has a smaller carbon footprint.
Thanks to E-Collective, we know the average carbon footprint of a Softies holiday in 2022/23 was 18kg CO₂e a day, or 126kg CO₂e a week. CO₂e means carbon dioxide equivalent, effectively lumping all greenhouse gases together to view emissions as a whole. On its own, 18kg doesn’t mean much, so here are a few examples for context. A week sailing in Croatia emits 735kg CO₂e, the equivalent of 6 Softies holidays. 18kg of CO₂e is the same amount of carbon as it takes to ship 11 avocados from South America. You'd also have to go on 27 Softies holidays for the same carbon footprint as a flight from London to New York.
The average UK citizen has a daily carbon footprint of between 16 and 35kg of CO₂e, although this number varies widely depending on behaviour and time of year. As you can see, often a Softies holiday produces less carbon than staying home. This is thanks to so many of our clients already choosing to travel to their holiday via trains, and once there, they enjoy a sustainable activity: cycling.
Firstly, our head office runs on renewable energy and we offer a cycle-to-work scheme. This encourages our employees to commute on their bikes and reduces the environmental impact commuting has. Secondly, we work with local, independent businesses in our destinations that also value sustainability. French hotels in particular are renowned for sourcing clean energy. We also encourage all our clients to visit local markets and shop locally when on holiday. This helps support local communities and also reduces the food miles that supermarket products carry.
Importantly, we’re also proud supporters of various charities dedicated to sustainability. Mossy Earth is a fantastic organisation which focuses on reforesting and rewilding the natural world. Helping to offset our carbon footprint, we contribute to several of their projects, with the largest being the protection of the Southern Carpathian wilderness. World Bicycle Relief is a charity that provides sturdy Buffalo Bikes to communities across the world, providing mobility and empowerment to people. These bikes help conquer the challenge of distance, allowing children to attend schools, farmers to go to market, and security to many who make long journeys every day. In 2022, Cycling for Softies provided 80 Buffalo Bikes which positively impacts the lives of over 250 people.
We will be evaluating what steps we can take next on our journey to becoming even more sustainable. Our next port of call is to review switching our vehicles in our destinations to electric vehicles. This is just one of the ways in which we are looking to reduce our impact on the environment, making our cycling holidays even more sustainable.
We’re just at the start of this journey and are excited to see what we can achieve over the coming years. We know that even making small tweaks will add up to make all the difference. We’ll keep you updated and would love for you to follow us on this journey.
Visit our sustainability hub to find out more about how you can minimise your carbon footprint for your next cycling holiday.
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