With over seven billion people living on Earth and human emissions of CO2 estimated to be 26.4 GT per year, it can often feel as though the actions of individual people can’t possibly make a difference. When looking at ways to encourage green behaviour en masse, the “feel-good factor” has been found to have a huge impact on consumers’ actions — everyone knows the unbeatable satisfaction of remembering to take a plastic bag to the supermarket — but recently, numerous companies have been exploring ways to further incentivize eco-friendly behaviour. We saw Le Repas bistro in Brazil offer a free salad to diners who arrived by bicycle and now, Changers is encouraging sustainable mobility by rewarding participants with their green currency — Recoins.
Changers was inspired by the Kyoto Climate Summit which saw the international community recognize CO2 savings as a massive worldwide priority — and one which should be rewarded when undertaken. Changers translates this ambition to a micro scale — enabling individual consumers to participate in the green movement in a measurable and rewarding way.
In 2011, Changers developed a solar charger which, when connected to a social network platform, translates grams of CO2 savings into Renewable Energy Coins — Recoins. Now, they are applying the same strategy to eco-friendly travel. Users download the Changers CO2 Fit app which tracks the distances they travel by bicycle or public transport and translates kilometers travelled sustainably into Recoins. Users are encouraged to compare their “scores” to those of friends and strangers on a worldwide leader-board adding an element of competition.
Recoins are produced using solar energy created by local run kiosks in Ethiopia, Kenya and Botswana and can be exchanged for gold standard CO2 Certificates — it enables and rewards green behaviour every step of the way. Are there any other eco-friendly devices that could alter their production or distribution to make their business model even greener?