Yokohama Carbon Offset Project

A. Case Study Overview

1. Activity/ Project Title:
Yokohama Carbon Offset Project
2. Themes:
Climate Change
3. Summary:  

In anticipation of major international sports events in Yokohama, the city has been running the Yokohama Carbon Offset Project since July 2018 as a Zero Carbon Yokohama initiative. Carbon reductions by city residents and business operators who signed up for the project were used to offset the approx. 308 tons of carbon emitted by holding the Rugby World Cup 2019TM in Yokohama, resulting in a balance of zero emissions.

4. Sector:
City : Yokohama Climate Change Policy Headquarters
5. Implementation Period:

July 2018 – November 2019

6. Project Site :
Yokohama City
7. Stakeholders&Partners:
Yokohama Climate Change Countermeasures Promotion Council

B. Objective:

8. Objectives:
In anticipation of a major sports event, the project aimed to help in offsetting the carbon emissions of large gatherings by encouraging a broad range of city residents and business operators to reduce emissions through energy savings and other efforts.

C. Activities

9. /Activities:

Divided into different categories—such as the general category (energy-saving behaviour category, LED category, energy saving equipment, etc. category, walking category, and tree planting category), student category, and business operator category—a broad range of city residents and business operators were invited to strive to reduce carbon emissions through energy savings and other efforts. The cumulative reductions achieved by participants were first tallied by the Yokohama Carbon Offset Project, and then applied to help offset carbon emissions after the sports events.

Efforts were also made to incorporate insights from behavioural science (nudges) in pamphlets encouraging participation in the school category.

D. Challenges and solutions:

10. Challenges and solutions:

With a major international sports event—Rugby World Cup 2019TM—being held during the project, it was clear what the carbon offsets were for, making it possible to encourage a broad range of city residents to participate. In order to continue these efforts in the future, it will be necessary to expand the focus of offset efforts to things besides these types of major sports events and to devise methods of encouraging city resident participation.

E. Outcomes and Impacts:

11. Outcomes&Impacts:

The six matches held during Rugby World Cup 2019TM in Yokohama emitted approx. 308 tons of CO2. However, the carbon reductions achieved by city residents and business operators more than offset this, with a reduction of approx. 269 tons in the city resident category (with approx. 34,000 participants) and approx. 729 tons in the business operator category (with six participating business operators). It was an outcome achieved by collaboration between the public and private sector and city residents to meet the Zero Carbon Yokohama objective. It is clear that the socially-motivating message was effective as a result of the employment of insights from behavioural science (nudges) in the school category and verification of effectiveness using randomized controlled trials. This kind of evidence-based policy making (EBPM) is important, and will be used in future efforts at raising public awareness.

F. Budget:

12. Budget:

10 million JPY (Total for FY2018 and FY2019)

13. Source:
City expenses