The carbon calculator, "Carmacal'' is an online calculator where operators can enter detailed information on a travel product's transport, accommodation and activities in their own secure web environment. Air transport carbon footprints are calculated by linking origin and destination airport names to a comprehensive database which includes all known flight legs worldwide, including the airline and aircraft used on each leg. That information serves as the basis for a unique carbon footprint.


Implemented in

  • Africa
  • Asia / Pacific
  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Latin America / Caribbean
  • Middle East
  • North America

Sectors of activity
Scientific Research, Development and Innovation, Tourism

Type of initiative
Capacity Building & Implementation, Education & Awareness Raising

Type of lead actor
Business Sector

Start date

Shared by

Gerben Hardemann

Manager Responsible Travel & Tourism

Dutch Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (ANVR)

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• to open the way for the tourism and travel sector to apply serious carbon management, giving a large range of options to improve the carbon footprint of products
• to provide data that are unique and of high academic standards and even better than those applied by ICAO
• to make it is easy to use for businesses and fully ready to be duplicated and applied all over the world.
• to become the world standard for carbon foot printing, and potentially carbon labelling based upon it.
• to apply Carmacal based carbon management to potentially reduce product portfolio footprints by several per cents per year.

The idea to implement carbon management in the global management of a tour operator, travel agency or destination management organization is entirely new for the tourism sector.
Carmacal is the first and only carbon calculator that assesses the carbon footprint of all known flight sectors and including the effects of the specific airline and aircraft used on the flight segment. Even the ICAO calculator does not provide this for effective carbon management indispensable level of detail.
 Also the variance in carbon footprint for different accommodations was successfully tackled by Carmacal in cooperation with by creating a 500,000 listings database with estimated footprints based on the characteristics of the accommodations.
 Effective carbon management, including detailed upgrading of products to reduce their footprint, is impossible without the level of accuracy and detail provided by Carmacal. The combination of footprinting for several modes of transport, accommodations and activities is unique. Existing calculators fail to be comprehensive or accurate or both.


As collected through the One Planet Reporting

No activities have yet been reported under this initiative

Impact and Results

The scalability of the Carmacal
Carmacal will be integrated in Travelife and it can be used all over the world. The language and manual are in English, it is web-based, new licence fee will be made available in 1st quarter of 2018

Carmacal can be provided to any business in the world. The general idea of carbon management is can be used by any group of tour operators, travel agencies or destinations.

Applying carbon management potentially may generate direct economic benefits like savings on energy consumption, carbon taxes and carbon trading costs, and indirectly it will help to make the product development more innovative because of the added constraint of minimizing the carbon footprint. This will give competitive advantages. The environmental benefits can be substantial. For instance, on a flight between London and Athens, a choice for Thomsonfly instead of Aegean airlines will save almost 40% on the carbon emissions per passenger. During a pilot of carbon management at a small Dutch intercontinental tour operator (Sawadee) we found the company was able to reduce the carbon footprint per tourist-day in 2011 with 2% as compared to 2010. For individual products the improvements were up to 10% by changing flight routes and even 13% by partly replacing aircraft with trains. As Carmacal offers far more detailed footprint information as the model used in the Sawadee pilot, we expect that such annual efficiency improvements can even be surpassed using Carmacal. Furthermore, carbon management will stimulate management thinking about product portfolio development, including carbon emissions next to the normal parameters like turnover, market shares and profits. Carmacal data are easily combined with for instance turnover to generate eco-efficiency plots clearly showing favourable and less favourable products. Eco-efficiency helps to reduce emissions at the lowest cost possible. Shifts in market portfolio are potentially very effective, but will be more challenging to implement. For instance, replacing an Antarctica cruise with an Arctic cruise will cut emissions by over 50% but the challenge will be to make it as attractive to cust

Next steps and how to get involved

we are planning to integrate the help desk and support in Travelife (1st quarter 2018)