Unless you work in technology, you probably haven't heard of a company called Stripe.
It's a company that calls itself "Payments infrastructure for the internet", and is used by millions of businesses, from Google to Amazon, to process payments.
It's not just huge businesses that use it. At Leonardo English, we also use Stripe to process payments for memberships.
Last year, Stripe launched something called Stripe Climate, which makes it incredibly easy for businesses to support carbon removal projects.
Before Stripe Climate, if a business wanted to do something to help climate change there was typically lots of bureaucracy - accounting, legal, tax departments.
Now, any company that uses Stripe can choose to put a percentage of their revenue towards carbon removal projects chosen by Stripe.
It takes 2 minutes, and is incredibly easy to set up.
These projects are really interesting, and have the potential to have a huge impact.
Climeworks uses renewable geothermal energy and waste heat to capture CO₂ directly from the air, concentrate it, and permanently sequester it underground in basaltic rock formations with Carbfix. While it’s early in scaling, it’s permanent, easy to measure, and the capacity of this approach is theoretically nearly limitless.
CarbonCure injects CO₂ into fresh concrete, where it mineralises and is permanently stored while improving the concrete’s compressive strength. Today they source waste CO₂, but represent a promising platform technology for permanent CO₂ storage, a key component of future carbon removal systems.
Project Vesta captures CO₂ by using an abundant, naturally occurring mineral called olivine. Ocean waves grind down the olivine, increasing its surface area. As the olivine breaks down, it captures atmospheric CO₂ from within the ocean and stabilises it as limestone on the seafloor.
Charm Industrial has created a novel process for preparing and injecting bio-oil into geologic storage. Bio-oil is produced from biomass and maintains much of the carbon that was captured naturally by the plants. By injecting it into secure geologic storage, they’re making the carbon storage permanent.
From last week, 1% of all of the revenue from Leonardo English memberships goes directly to these projects.
Of course, 1% of the revenue of a small company is not going to make a different in itself, but it is making a small statement.
If this starts becoming the norm, and if it becomes what is expected by consumers, then businesses that are far larger than Leonardo English will start doing it, and the impact will be even greater.
Removing carbon from the atmosphere is an important way of reducing climate change, and if there's a way in which Leonardo English can help support it, then it's our responsibility to do so.