By Spencer Feingold
In an effort to raise awareness about carbon emissions and alternative transportation methods, "The Big Bang Theory" actress Kaley Cuoco has signed on with Shell for a new YouTube series titled “The Great Travel Hack.”
The show follows two teams as they travel from Los Angeles to New York. The team that makes it cross country with the lowest carbon emission is crowned the winner.
“Everyone loves to travel,” Cuoco told Cheddar on Thursday. “It is important that we are open to new cleaner ways to get there and different modes of transportation.”
“This is a big topic right now,” she said.
Transport accounts for nearly 30 percent of the world’s total energy use and around a quarter of global energy-related carbon emissions, according to a statement by Royal Dutch Shell's U.S. arm, citing a recent study from the International Energy Agency.
“Increasing demand is contributing to rising pressure on our climate, especially when it comes to transport,” the statement added.
The contestants used alternative forms of transportation ranging from electric cars to horses. One participant even made his way cross country on his skateboard.
Shell engineers accompanied the teams to monitor their CO2 emissions.
The series launches as concern over climate change continues to sweep the nation and debate progresses around new legislation, such as the Green New Deal, which was formally introduced in Congress last month. A point of contention often includes how much pressure to put on consumers to change or on businesses, such as Shell, to alter corporate practices.
Cuoco said she is aware of skepticism about Shell, an oil giant, launching a show aimed at reducing CO2 emissions. But Cuoco said she is "proud to stand by them" on this project.
"They're actually doing unbelievable things," she said. "They're the ones that want to make the difference."
Cuoco added that the series is not going to lower greenhouse emissions overnight but she hoped the challenge would inspire and educate the public on cleaner transportation methods.
“This is not going to go away from one little thing like this but it is a start,” Cuoco said. “A little tiny inch forward is a big deal.”
The first episode aired Thursday on YouTube.
For full interview click here.