Carbon Neutrality At Your Fingertips
Dubai, UAE: No one is too small to make a positive impact on the planet. This is what a new Dubai based start-up, Olive Gaea, is ready to prove as it launches the first carbon offset platform in the MENA region today.
Having the sixth largest per capita carbon footprint in the world, UAE residents and businesses will now be able to become carbon neutral or even carbon positive by removing their own carbon emissions from the atmosphere in just a couple of clicks.
“Climate change is a real, urgent threat. We all share the responsibility to act in order to preserve our planet and, ultimately, our very future. The good news is that each one of us can now actually help solve this problem,” says Olive Gaea’s Founder and CEO, Vivek Tripathi.
Olive Gaea calculates the carbon footprint of any individual or business through a simple yet science-based questionnaire. It then provides dedicated plans and a list of carbon offsetting solutions and verified climate projects, and allows users to track progress and get rewarded driving more positive change through monthly and annual subscriptions. Moreover, the platform allows customers to offset purchases made on e-commerce businesses including grocery orders, food and fuel delivery, and online stores, among others.
Accountability, trustworthiness, and transparency are at the heart of the process. Olive Gaea only supports carbon offsetting projects that are handpicked and verified by third party agencies like Verra and Plan Vivo. The platform is also powered by precise geo-tagging and QR code tracking, so users can know the exact location and the impact they help to generate with new plantation projects in just a few clicks.
“We launched Olive Gaea to create a world where people can feel proud about their climate story. Our goal is to make carbon offsetting affordable, helping everyone, anywhere, anytime to build a resilient climate future,” says Vivek.
Olive Gaea’s carbon offsetting is not about paying to eliminate a sense of guilt for excessive emissions or an unsustainable lifestyle. According to Vivek, offsetting carbon emissions must always go hand in hand with sustainable strategies that aim at reducing the environmental footprint in the first place. Yet, carbon credits are still needed to offset the remaining carbon emissions’s balance.
In fact, while some of the carbon emissions can be prevented and reduced, both businesses and individuals find that with the current technologies it is still impossible or way too expensive to fully eliminate their emissions. That’s where carbon offsetting solutions like Olive Gaea come into play.
Vivek explains: “With our platform, we aim to generate the awareness needed to act sustainably; understanding and measuring our own environmental footprint is the first step to a more conscious lifestyle. We believe in action and in the power of each individual’s choices to preserve our planet and our future.”
Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, nearly 200 countries have endorsed the global goal of limiting the rise in average temperatures to 2.0 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, and ideally 1.5 degrees. To meet this target, global greenhouse-gas emissions should be cut by 50 percent of current levels by 2030 and reduced to net zero by 2050.
The UAE is one of the signatories of the Paris Agreement and has recently reaffirmed its goal to become a global leader in the green economy and address climate change. Having launched prominent strategic initiatives spanning from the National Agenda 2021 to the Energy Strategy 2050 and the Dubai 2040 Master plan, just to name a few, the country still faces an extremely high per capita carbon footprint.
UAE residents, in fact, generate around 22 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually on average against a global average of 4.8 tonnes, way above the limit that would allow the world to meet the Paris Agreement’s targets and limit global warming. Olive Gaea, while supporting the UAE’s strategy to focus on sustainable development and green economy, helps both companies and people to balance out their carbon emissions.
Research shows that, alongside cutting CO2 emissions, carbon offsetting and voluntary carbon credits can help achieve the net zero target by financing climate-action projects that generate additional benefits including biodiversity protection, pollution prevention, and local community support and development. According to the Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets (TSVCM), the demand for carbon credits could increase 15 times or more in the next decade, pushing the global carbon credit market’s value to no less than $50 billion by 2030.
About Olive Gaea:
Founded by Vivek Tripathi and Apurva Bhandari, Olive Gaea is a web/mobile application where businesses and individuals can calculate their carbon footprint and choose to offset it through easy subscription plans in a couple of clicks.
Carbon footprint is a measure of GHG emissions released due to a particular activity, such as cooling your home, heating your lunch, or taking a flight from Dubai to London. Some of the activities, like producing phones, flying planes, or eating meat are particularly carbon-intensive. Staked together over a certain period of time, those activities make up your individual or business carbon footprint. Calculating your personal or business footprint is the first step to owning your climate story. Olive Gaea developed simple and accurate tools that let you find out the exact sources of emissions from your lifestyle and business operations and what can be done about them.