With all the unavoidable necessities of modern life and their associated environmental impacts, living a truly sustainable lifestyle may seem like an impossible undertaking. A newly launched startup would beg to differ.
Enter Treepoints, a new app that gives users reward points for offsetting their carbon footprint, by investing in projects that counterbalance environmentally unfriendly lifestyle practices, such as plane travel and meat-heavy diets.
“The only way to get to [carbon] zero and beyond is to couple behavior changes with active offsetting,” says Anthony Collias, one of the two co-founders. The app’s rewards scheme works like “air miles, but for helping the planet rather than hurting it,” Collias explains.
By signing up to one of the service’s three subscription plans — priced based on how much carbon one wishes to offset — users automatically fund UN-certified sustainable projects across the world.
Current projects include generating renewable energy for regions in Honduras and India, as well as capturing methane waste in Istanbul and using the greenhouse gas to power turbines for electricity. The latter project is expected to help the Turkish capital prevent more than 800,000 tons of CO2 emissions from entering the atmosphere every year.
According to the founders, their business allows people who are environmentally conscious, but who don’t necessarily have the motivation or knowhow to decipher where exactly to cut emissions, to ensure they’re making a difference.