We Are Certified Climate Neutral

Back in December, we threw our support behind some folks on Kickstarter.

Their name? Climate Neutral. Their cause? Providing a label that empowers consumers to easily find and shop at brands/businesses that have been enlisted and certified to be (you guessed it) climate neutral.

Now, on the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we’re excited to finally announce that we’re part of Climate Neutral’s inaugural class of certified businesses and to start rockin’ this rad label:

All right, cool. Rocket funded a Kickstarter campaign, became climate neutral, and got ourselves a label that proves it. Bing, bang, boom. So what?

Well for starters, it really was that easy.

Going climate neutral is not nearly as difficult or expensive as most people probably think. The founder of Peak Design, a travel gear company, co-founded Climate Neutral after realizing that it was possible to circumvent pricey consulting firms that calculated a precise carbon footprint in favor of a rougher estimate that made use of readily available data. Although rougher, this alternative cost-saving method wasn’t inaccurate. And the tens of thousands of dollars the company would have shelled out to a consulting firm could go to funding carbon offset initiatives. Peak Design, a company with a $30 million revenue, was able to offset its carbon emissions for just $60,000. Put another way: going climate neutral cost a fraction of a percent of the company’s annual revenue.

Peak Design’s example has become the basis for becoming Climate Neutral certified. The process breaks down into four steps: measure, reduce, offset, and label:

  • Measuring required us to track down data for Rocket’s direct and indirect emissions at three different scopes. This data included utility bills for our offices, business travel miles, and upstream/downstream shipping miles (irrelevant to Rocket as a software company). We entered this data into Climate Neutral’s Brand Emissions Estimator, which provided us with the estimate of our greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Reduction asked us to cut down on what emissions we could. To start we made efforts to reduce waste by providing Rocket offices and employees with reusable mugs and experimenting with zero-waste snack providers like Loop. Going forward we hope to make a bigger reduction by exploring green energy options to power our office spaces.
  • Offsetting took care of those emissions that were unavoidable. Our measurements indicated that Rocket needed to offset 876 tonnes of CO2 emissions. We did so partially through Climate Neutral’s offset pool program and mostly through a third-party company we know and love called Terra Neutra. Terra Neutra was created to help people make informed choices about how to proactively decrease their carbon footprint and to lead more sustainable lives. It just so happens that one of our former Brightcove colleagues (and all around great guy), Luke Gaydon, is one of the co-founders, so we were psyched to be able to use his platform to purchase a bunch of offsets. Our support went to an initiative in Darfur, providing folks there with low-smoke cookstoves that cut down on pollution. It’s a project beneficial to the environment as well as the health of people who would otherwise be exposed to toxins from wood- or coal-burning stoves.
  • Labelling was the easy part. Check out ours in the footer on the Rocket website!

All told, becoming a climate neutral brand took Rocket Insights just four months and cost less than $10,000. To put that number into perspective, Rocket spent about the same amount last year on drinks at the Thirsty Whale or the Paddle Inn, on coffee and donuts from Changing Tides, and on storage for our racing bed. Heck, last year’s budget for Red Bull was worth 200 tonnes of CO2 offsets.

This is all to say that there’s no excuse to not become climate neutral certified. It’s human responsibility to do what we can to mitigate climate change, and becoming certified is a step in doing so that’s easy, inexpensive, and impactful.

Finally, it’s also important to remember that this is just a first step. Rocket will measure, reduce, and offset our carbon emissions next year and the year after that. But every time we do so we’ll also be sure to treat ourselves to a round at the Thirsty Whale and enjoy our drinks in good conscience, knowing we’re doing our part to make a difference.

Find out more about Climate Neutral here.

Ready to join? Do that here.