We believe in systemic change. A report by the Climate Accountability Institute revealed last year that 100 companies have been the source of more than 70% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions since 1988. Without immediate and radical reductions in emissions, no amount of trees we plant can sequester and store the carbon these companies pump into our lungs every day for their shareholders’ profits.
While international accords such as the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement have centered carbon trade as a market-based fix for the climate crisis, we know from our friends at the Indigenous Environmental Network and the Climate Justice Alliance that these are false solutions, many of them amounting to “carbon colonialism.” We refuse to allow our tree planting projects to justify more emissions—the math simply doesn’t make sense. For that reason, we are choosing not to seek official verification of our carbon removal projects to be traded in the carbon market. Instead, we are establishing rigorous metrics for our projects to ensure the deepest level of transparency with our users.
Carbon removal initiatives need to be in place to draw down the excess of carbon we already have in our atmosphere. For those of us who lived through Hurricane Katrina, Sandy, or Maria; who left our countries because our crops failed; who were beaten and maced by police at Standing Rock—we know the climate crisis is already here. Even if every fossil fuel-burning power plant were to shut down tomorrow, we are already past the tipping point of 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Whatever our world leaders do or don’t do to control emissions, we need to start pulling carbon out of the atmosphere right now if we want to live on this earth.
Our approach to carbon removal is informed by our roots in the climate justice movement. We follow a relational organizing model informed by indigneous worldviews. Our user experience gives our members a direct connection to the communities, organizations, farmers and scientists pulling carbon back into the ground. We allow people of conscience to fund projects that give them a window into the regenerative future we are fighting for. While not every project is going to sequester the same number of pounds of carbon per dollar, every project has a myriad of positive impacts, some of which can be measured with numbers, others of which can be seen, heard, and felt.
We commit to a holistic approach to regenerating a planet that has sustained us for thousands of years. Climate crisis is not merely a consequence of a certain concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere—it is the consequence of an economic and political system that rewards extraction and exploitation, resulting in the collapse of entire ecological systems, including human health. We are developing diverse projects that represent both traditional and innovative techniques. We fund projects that have different priorities and are responsive to users’ feedback on which projects they are most inspired by.
In addition to funding carbon removal projects, we serve as a platform for activism, education and advocacy that empowers our users to take action beyond individual behavior change. As a private company, we are bringing a new toolkit to the struggle for climate justice which has been championed by non-profit and community organizations for decades. Our ability to move, adapt, and scale quickly, as well as impact culture, make us a valuable resource and ally to the countless entities in the climate justice fight. It will take all of us.