Jane Burston, co-founder of Carbon Retirement
Carbon Retirement offers the most effective way of carbon offsetting.
We give people the chance to reduce Europe’s reliance on fossil fuels and change behaviour for the long term. By allowing our customers to remove ('retire') pollution permits from Europe’s emission trading scheme, we cut the volume of carbon dioxide European industry can emit. This forces investment in low carbon technology and provides a reliable alternative to carbon offsetting.
Our customers are individuals that want to offset flights, driving or home energy use, or businesses that want to offset their travel or go carbon neutral.
The carbon offsetting market more than tripled over the past two years, but was marred with controversy as people debated the value of the projects being funded. Whilst existing offsetting companies fought negative publicity, we launched an alternative way of doing things that provided exactly what people wanted: a risk-free way of reducing emissions in our own backyards – and a transparent service they could rely on. Our motivation is to bring a different ethic to carbon offsetting – we want to create long-term change and reduce the developed world’s reliance on fossil fuels.
As a company we want to have a big impact on the level of emissions in Europe. Over 3 years we aim to buy and retire 300,000 pollution permits, making industry reduce its emissions by 300,000 tonnes (that’s equivalent to the annual greenhouse gas emissions from a town the size of Coventry). To do this we will need to grow our market share to around 3% of sales by UK-based offsetting companies.
We are also keen for the public to understand carbon markets, and for this understanding to translate into positive engagement with emission trading policies (which are a major part of the national and international response to climate change but are not currently well understood). To this end we publish a monthly newsletter with news, views and competitions, and produce creative communications such as our animation - making carbon trading easy to understand and fun!
Striding Out has been a real help for us. Through our listing in the Future 100 Ethical Entrepreneurs list, we met one of our first clients, ethical film company Nice and Serious. We love the newsletters, which are stuffed full of invaluable hints and tips, and have benefited hugely from marketing and sales coaching provided by Striding Out. We make the most of the opportunities that Striding Out provides.