Climate-neutral Kickstart

Guest Author
November 13 2019
In a world where more and more businesses are committing to building a more sustainable future, the next crucial step is going from talk to action. That’s why Kickstart has entered into a collaboration with South Pole, a leading provider of global sustainability financing solutions and services, aiming to make our events climate neutral.

South Pole is working with businesses and governments across the globe in order to help them realise deep decarbonisation pathways. Also Kickstart has chosen this path in order to take meaningful climate action.

What is climate neutrality?

Climate neutrality has been an established concept since the beginning of this century, and the phrase “carbon neutral” was word of the year in 2006. It combines an organisation’s need to account for their carbon footprint and establish a clear reduction strategy, before offsetting unavoidable emissions. The purpose is to reduce net climate impact to zero – which is why recently the term “net zero” is becoming increasingly popular.

How does it work for the Kickstart?

By working together with South Pole, we firstly quantify all data that relates to the carbon footprint of the event, from planning and marketing to its execution. This includes emissions from transport and accommodation for both organisers and attendees but also energy and food consumption. We then realise a reduction strategy by powering the event with 100% renewable energy. By compensating the unavoidable emissions with high quality emission reduction projects under internationally recognised standards, we not only ensure that the emissions created by our event are compensated, but that positive impacts contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals are continually supported in developing countries: By investing in projects like the Kariba forest protection project in Zimbabwe, for example, Kickstart is saving forests, protecting wildlife and helping to create skilled job opportunities within the local community. Kickstart is also supporting the Yangcun, Run-of-River Hydropower project, which generates affordable clean energy in rural China and creates permanent job opportunities that advance the local economy.

The Kariba project in Zimbabwe aims at saving forests, protecting wildlife and helping to create skilled job opportunities within the local community. (Photo by South Pole)

The South Pole climate neutrality labels are closely aligned with international standards such as PAS 2060 – the leading international standard for demonstrating carbon neutrality, developed in 2014 by the British Standards Institution (BSi). The underlying greenhouse gas (GHG) accounting must follow recognised international standards such as the GHG Protocol or ISO 14064-1.