Sustainable Company Awards 2022

Nature-based initiative of the year, Americas: Aspiration

The 'Plant Your Change' programme from US sustainable consumer finance firm Aspiration allows anyone to support reforestation projects with ever payment made using a debit or credit card.

Andrei ChernyReforestation has proven to be one of the most cost-effective methods to fight climate change and capture carbon, but Aspiration said it is still underutilised throughout the world. The firm said it is estimated that reforestation can provide 23% of the mitigation needed by 2030, but it currentlyonly accounts for 3% of current climate change mitigation funding.

Launched in 2020, tree-planting initiative 'Plant Your Change' aims to enable consumer to reduce their carbon footprint through daily action and to plant a billion trees by 2030.

To date, 'Plant Your Change' has planted 124 million trees in Kenya, Mozambique, Madagascar, Honduras, Brazil, and the US, which Aspiration said makes it one of the largest private-sector tree planting operations in the world.

The credit card can help to offset the average user's daily carbon footprint with just one swipe per day, Aspiration said. With every purchase made, Aspiration will plant one tree and give the customer the option to round up their purchase to plant another.

The recycled card allows customers to track their carbon footprint and the impact of their purchases on the environment. "This credit card is unlike any other on the market," Aspiration said.

Andrei Cherny, co-founder of Aspiration, said: "We are in the midst of a global transformation as we move toward sustainability on an individual basis, across every business, and throughout society.

"We are continuing to grow across our business. We are beginning to invest in nature-based carbon removal credit that will have planet-scale impact – driving meaningful carbon removal."