We at Green Drinks do love combining socializing with causes. Years ago, we were directly introduced to Proud Pour – wine for the good of bees and oysters. Our friends at Proud Pour are now trying to raise funds to launch a New England cider in support of sea turtle rehabilitation. Check it out!
Editor’s note: At Green Drinks, our attendees come from all walks of life in sustainability and many work for Boston area start-ups that are innovating how consumers can take control of their climate impact. Today’s post showcases one of those start-ups.
ClimateStore is a new e-commerce portal where consumers can learn about climate change, make an action plan, and find products to reduce their carbon impact. Consistent with its mission, the company runs its operations in a carbon neutral manner; the company’s website is powered with wind energy, its operational and shipping footprint is managed through carbon offsets, and employees are offered incentives to use public transportation. ClimateStore Inc. also relies on partnerships with like-minded organizations such as 1% for the Planet in order to support reforestation initiatives and climate change awareness programs. The soft-launch of ClimateStore Inc.’s website was on Earth Day 2014.
Climatestore.com is designed to help visitors learn about climate science and its impacts, call people to action, assist them in setting up plans to reduce their carbon emissions, and to provide products to help them achieve their reduction goals. The company offers about 250 carbon lowering products. These include energy efficient lighting, water saving devices, smart home technology, home décor, laundry items, travel gear, educational materials, and accessories. Each product is evaluated to identify exactly how it reduces carbon emissions, including the production, use, and disposal phases of the product’s lifecycle. This classification is communicated with a simple icon system.
“In launching the site, we seek to close a gap in the retail space, namely, the lack of an easily recognizable retail brand focused on climate change that has both educational content and linked products to help people reduce emissions. We also believe that very few brands are focused on making the transition to lower carbon lifestyles fun and easy for the consumer” said Bushnell. “There is a false perception that moving to a lower carbon economy will mean giving things up or require extra effort. We take the opposite view; lowering one’s carbon footprint should be fun, easy and rewarding as we collectively secure the stable climate we all hope to live in.” Says Steve Bushnell, Ph.D., Founder and CEO of ClimateStore Inc.
Starting with a call-to-action, the educational content includes summaries of the latest climate science and impacts, the importance of acting now, content and activities for children, and frequently asked questions. The site also features a simple path for setting up a personal action plan. While many of the current products focus on energy efficiency and items made from upcycled materials, the company plans to expand its product offerings through partnerships to include home solar and wind.
“We are truly excited about the quality and impact of the carbon lowering products in our offerings and look forward to expanding” said Bushnell. “There is a growing pipeline of innovative carbon lowering products from companies that use traditional and more sustainable manufacturing processes. We look forward to playing a role in evaluating them and, when successful, marketing them to carbon conscious consumers in the years ahead.”
Editor’s note: This is a guest post from the team at New Generation Energy. We at Boston Green Drinks love the idea of donating money to helping clean energy projects advance.
Lowering your carbon footprint online is quite simple: You go to a website like TerraPass, enter your credit card info, and that’s it! You can take your next trip guilt free. While these offset organizations are phenomenal and help raise awareness about emissions, you have very little control over how your money is used.
New Generation Energy is different.
We run a Green Project Listing Site that features green energy and energy efficiency projects at nonprofits nationwide. It’s similar to a microfinance site but support is in the form a donation rather than a loan, and all listed projects have measurable energy and carbon savings.
In other words, YOU pick the project, neighborhood, and organization your want your carbon offset dollars to go to. And you’re not only lowering your impact on the environment with your donation — you’re also helping a local community go green.
After you donate to a project, we email you your personal carbon savings as well as the dollar amount you saved the nonprofit. In addition, we update you regularly on the progress of the project and include photos and videos so you actually see your dollars being put to work and making a difference.
Some of our recently funded projects include a $21,000 solar panel installation at a school in Sudbury, Mass. that is expected to save 154,343 lbs of carbon over its lifetime, and a $25,000 geothermal installation at church in Tennessee with a carbon savings of 1,809,360 lbs. We’re also in the process of helping a senior center in Minnesota raise $16,000 for a weatherization project, which will offset 325,366 lbs of CO2 and First Parish in Brookline is using our site to raise $8000 for a green project trifiecta. It’s a water conservation and window and attic insulation project that will save about 389,654 lbs of CO2.
These figures are calculated from the organization’s energy audits — or estimates – as well as the latest energy metrics. You can check out more detailed information about a project’s carbon savings on its data sheet. (Example here.)
In total, our listing site has helped save more than 5 million lbs of CO2 and fund 11 green projects nationwide!