Welcome, Shopify, and what are we waiting for?
What are we waiting for?
Huge swaths of Europe, Asia, and the Americas are burning, while parts of China, Western Europe, and Brazil have seen unprecedented flooding. We’re being bombarded with headline after headline of historic natural disasters. If we don’t act now, climate change will be much worse in terms of death and disruption to society and the economy than even COVID has been. We need to throw everything we’ve got at decarbonization, as the time for arguments over climate change is over. The IPCC report made it abundantly clear that we need to scale up permanent, measurable carbon removal ASAP.
In 2019, Shopify made a commitment to kickstart the fledgling carbon removal market. They created a first-of-its-kind Sustainability Fund to help prove, scale, and commercialize climate technology for massive impact long term. Today, we are excited to announce that Shopify has selected Heirloom as an integral piece of their carbon removal portfolio, which was announced in September 2020. Shopify has committed to purchasing 400 tons of carbon removal to help fund Heirloom’s first deployment, which together with their subsequent multi-year offtake commitment, will be the largest purchase of Heirloom’s carbon removal to date.
From our very first conversations with Shopify, we knew this was a great match. While they recognize the urgency and scale of the carbon removal challenge, they share our optimistic vision for a climate positive future. They have a long-term perspective and a thoughtful approach to betting on technologies with gigaton potential. And they understand the importance of addressing the problem now. As Shopify’s CEO Tobi Lütke has said, “to make the next century worth reaching, we need to take better care of our planet.”
That same principle is at Heirloom’s core. Our planet is the most precious object we can imagine, and it’s each of our duties to protect, restore, and rebalance it.
A call to arms!
More and more, companies around the world are waking up to the reality of climate change, making net zero or carbon neutral pledges, and working to reduce emissions. The problem is that decarbonization remains challenging, and many of these pledges rely on large quantities of low-cost, low-quality offsets to meet their goals, some of which are going up in flames. We cannot assume that, somehow, sometime in the future, high-quality carbon removal will just be there when it’s needed, that someone else will have done the hard work for us.
But what happens when all of these net-zero commitments come due, all at once. Where will the high-quality carbon removal come from?
If you’re on a sustainability team thinking about a climate pledge, or part of a company that’s looking to do more, we are talking to you! Lead the way on carbon removal, don’t follow. It doesn’t take a dedicated $5M fund to help. Identifying funding-worthy carbon removal projects and reallocating some of your offset budget can help to catalyze the solutions we need to reverse climate change. Don’t just take our word for it either. Do it because it’s smart. Do it because Shopify, one of the most innovative companies in the world, has peeked into the future and recognized that their business, brand, employees, customers, and planet are better off when they invest in carbon removal.
Some of the technologies you bet on may not succeed, but many of them will. When the time comes, they’ll be there to help you reach your net zero commitment the right way, and to remove your legacy emissions to go completely net-negative over time. So, use your position, roll up your sleeves, and help to scale an industry that will be essential to reach our climate goals. The planet will be better off because of you.
If you’re wondering where to start, Shopify wrote it all down in their Playbook on Kickstarting the Carbon Removal Market. They’ve put their money where their mouth is, and we’re calling on you to do the same.
Send us a note at email@example.com to learn more about how to take the next step.