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Topic: Carbon Neutral reward program

by Kioskbiz 9 Jul 11, 28 replies : Last Post Sort by:
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22 posts
This forum thread has been marked as a question for other Ecobob users to answer. Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 9 Jul 11 2:03 PM
Hi, is anyone who owns a retail outlet or ecommerce website interested in joining a carbon neutral reward program.

Joining is free, you only pay for the rewards issued to members.


472 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 10 Jul 11 6:50 PM
Hello Kioskbiz,

Anyone interested, would need more detail and or answers to the following:

Who operates the programme and what fees do they take as a percentage or flat fee?
What is the unit of ‘reward’ in either $ terms or Carbon terms?
What is the unit price of Carbon?

Where does my money end up?

Thanks - Rex

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 10 Jul 11 7:51 PM
Hi Sceptics, thank you for your interest.


How carbon credits are purchased by wholesalers and retailers: 1 carbon credit = $0.01 (EG: 5 = 5c, 100 = $1.00 etc)
• For specific items; credits in any denomination (1, 10, 100 etc) are printed on stickers and affixed to specific items in store.
• For various services; credits in any denominations are printed on coupons and issued to members at their discretion either in store or through email and regular mail.
• For online activities; credits are purchased in bulk and issued in any credit denomination for various activities in the community and on affiliated websites.

How carbon credits are earned by members:
• In store; carbon credits are earned through purchasing specific items that have a coupon attached to them and by entering the serial numbers from the coupon in the online community when prompted with the number of credits awarded to a member varying by store, product or service
Carbon credits can also be earned by answering questionnaires or by being the specific customer of the day/week/month.
• Online; carbon credits are earned from a variety of community tasks such as updating membership details, interacting with marketing email, answering questionnaires, purchasing items from the community store or by performing tasks and purchasing items from affiliated websites.
Members can issue carbon credits to other members for purchasing their items from the community classifieds section.
• As gifts; carbon credits can be earned as gifts from other members, retailers and manufacturers.
• Affiliated memberships; instore transactions from some loyalty/membership cards can earn carbon credits based on the number of times they are used and in some cases on specific items purchased or the transaction amount.

How carbon credits are redeemed:
Carbon credits are redeemed in the online community for community services such as listing items and services for sale with video features and for trees in order to become carbon neutral.

Carbon credits redemption value:
500 carbon credits (= $5.00) are redeemed per tree offsetting 1 tonne of carbon emissions, equivalent to 4,000 kilometres of carbon neutral driving that is planted in regional areas designated by the members and planted by various environmental organizations such as NZ Forest and Bird Society and ECO NZ.
10 carbon credits (= $0.10) are redeemed each time a member lists an item in the online community video classifieds section.


22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 10 Jul 11 7:58 PM
Hi Sceptics, here is some additional information.


For Manufacturers, Wholesalers, Distributors and Retailers ot every commercial category.

Manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors and retailers participate in the carbon credit reward program by freely joining the online community and purchasing carbon credits that they issue to members for activities such as purchasing their items instore or online, receiving marketing email, answering questionnaires and by clicking on advertisements.

They can also earn carbon credits to become carbon neutral by purchasing products and services through the program.

For Members.

Members participate in the carbon credit program by freely joining the online community through a simple email, password and username registration process.


How carbon credits are traded:
Members can use carbon credits as community currency to buy items from other members.


Carbon credit redemption validation:
Members can choose to display the number of credits they have earned and the number of trees planted in their name in the online community Honour Roll for all to see.

I hope this answers everything.

Regards,
Kioskbiz

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 10 Jul 11 8:22 PM
The entire program is run through an extensive community software application developed by a friend and I.

www.netvillage.com

This is the engine, with special custom features that the carbon neutral program runs off.

Regards,
Kioskbiz

472 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 11 Jul 11 11:07 AM
Hello again, Kioskbiz,

Thank you for your detailed posts. However, I am not sure that they completely answer my questions.

Correct me if I am wrong, but this system seems like a ‘Barter Card’ concept of trading within a dedicated but limited group with common ideals.

I still ask “Who operates the programme and what fees do they take as a percentage or flat fee?”
I understand that you are more involved in the software end of this scheme – will that be linked to a webpage that sells advertising for example?

Is all my purchase payment toward ‘Carbon Credit Redemption’ (CCR) applied to this end or are some ‘fees’ deducted?

Who independently audits the application of my CCR against the tree planting by NZF&B or ECO NZ?
Both may be trustworthy organizations, but when money is involved I like to see transparency.

I note that your CCR rate per tree is $5.00 per ton against the current Government rate of $12.50 per ton for CO2 emission – why so low, and is that a correct assumption?

Thanks Rex

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 11 Jul 11 11:59 AM
Hi Rex, thank you once again for some good feedback.

This is not a bartercard format, think of it as Fly Buys and rather than members receiving a toaster when they redeem points, their reward is a tree planted to offset their CO2 emissions.

There is an online community, akin to Facebook where members can communicate with others although they can buy and sell items in this one and where possible use carbon credits as the currency.

But this is primarily a reforesting program that allows manufacturers and retailers to pay for their customers to become carbon neutral through purchasing their goods and services.

I operate the system and take 25% with the balance going into the planted trees cost.

There will be a website that advertises environmentally friendly businesses.

Auditing of a persons CO2 footprint will be done via an accredited website - http://www.carbonzero.co.nz/EmissionsCalc/tourismeditor.aspx.

$5.00 per tree is accurate, 1 tonne of CO2 requires 1 tree over its lifetime, I do not know why the Government is setting such a high fee for buying and planting a tree when in reality that is all that is required.

Regards,
Doug


22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 11 Jul 11 5:16 PM
Hi Rex, regarding your "purchase payment towards your CCR" question, as a member you do not pay for any of the credits, they are issued to you freely by wholesalers and or retailers when you buy specific items from them.

This is a way for businesses to get past the issue of 'an ounce of prevention being worth a ton of cure', as this is when the ounce of prevention could be slightly out of reach and worth far more than the tone of cure = carbon credits = for the time being that is.

Although the amount of trees planted can be verified in the amount of CO2 they are offsetting against whatever CO2 generation, the members are sent a numbered certificate each time they redeem credits for trees.

This certificate along with the option of having their username and amount of trees they have had planted is the personal reward to the member knowing they are doing their bit and probably a bot for others as well.

This same carbon credit system works in the travel industry too by offsetting the amount of CO2 generated from flying and staying in a resort.

472 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 13 Jul 11 10:51 PM
Hello again Doug,

As I am a retailer, designing kitchens, I wonder what value you would consider I could derive from your scheme.
Say I invested in planting 1280 trees at $5 each (a total of $6400 – yes there is a reason for that number), what would my tangible returns be other than a ‘feel good factor that I am doing my bit’ multiplied by 1280?
Or do you consider that a small contribution of $5 is an option for everyone, whereas a larger investment such as the above should be directed elsewhere?

Your comments appreciated.
Thanks Rex

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 14 Jul 11 5:08 AM
Hi Rex, as you are a designer of kitchens I can think of a number of ways in which your investment of $6,400 can add value to your business but I would need to know a little bit of hypothetical yet relevant information.

So in a round about way how many kitchens would you design a year.

How many kitchens would be sold off those designs.

With regard to the fittings in these kitchens do you supply drawings only or do you get involved in the source and supply.

I am happy for you to email me this directly if you want.

Regards,
Doug

472 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 14 Jul 11 9:20 AM
Hello again Doug,

As noted in my ‘Bio’ I am now retired and designing only a few kitchens per year for selected return clients. I have sold my Company supplying full contract high end kitchens and prefer to not say more as I am well known in the industry, so please treat this as a theoretical exercise for Ecobob readers, rather than a prospect.

My previous question lacked complete background information.
The reference to 1280 x $5 equates to the $6400 purchase price per share in a Company offering ‘one share’ out of 400 in an exotic timber plantation.
I have an estimated value for the sale of trees in 12 years, from a guaranteed recoverable stock of 384 trees per Ha, (allowing for the proportion of natural attrition) and wish to compare.

However, to compare your scheme accurately for the individual plantation shareholder, the number of trees owned by each shareholder should be calculated at 46 x $5 = $230 investment.

So, what advantages or disadvantages does your scheme have and why should I invest with you as a preference?

Thanks Rex

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 14 Jul 11 10:11 AM
Hi Rex, I felt this was the case – an exercise to demonstrate the measure of value in such a program which I welcome, thank you.

As a designer of kitchens I would not expect you to pay for any trees although you can, but your role is best spent influencing where the fittings are purchased with the manufacturer, wholesaler or retailer paying for them.

A house can generate 3 tonne of CO2 a year from electricity and gas alone, with this program that is 3 x $5.00 trees.

So therefore in the overall mix of a kitchen fit out with all parties cooperating (builders, suppliers etc) to collectively award the customer between $15.00 (1,500 credits) and $150.00 (15,000 credits), the delighted customer would theoretically receive between 1 and 10 years of carbon neutral electricity and gas once they redeem their credits for trees.

The trees are then given to entities to plant in the “name” of those who redeem them and in a location where available, of their choice.

These locations are public such as beaches, parks and schools and their maintenance is that of the governing bodies.

So this is not a program where you purchase the trees for yourself.

Regards,
Doug

334 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 14 Jul 11 1:13 PM
Hi Kioskbiz

Can you please show how you get this: "A house can generate 3 tonne of CO2 a year from electricity and gas alone..."

I've seen some solar hot water calcs that says they (SHW) save a tonne of CO2 per year, and I was curious how that was arrived at also but alas didn't manage to find the source.

Seeker


22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 14 Jul 11 1:30 PM
Hi Rex, I got this figure from entering my own consumption into the calculator on this site.

You need to register but you get a good idea of your CO2 generation.

http://www.carbonzero.co.nz/EmissionsCalc/login.aspx

Regards,
Doug

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 15 Jul 11 8:16 AM
Hi Rex, I have re-written my documentation from a Q&A perspective to better explain how the program works.
_________________________________________


Carbon Credit Reward Program

“A loyalty program where the reward is a tree and the earth is the recipient”

What is it and what does it do:
This is a fully managed environmentally friendly loyalty program where members earn credits that are redeemed for trees planted in their names and designated locations.
These credits are paid for by participating manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers of select items that are purchased either instore or online.

How do Manufacturers, Wholesalers and Retailers participate:
Participation in program is free with the purchase of carbon credits to award members when they purchase specific items or perform various tasks online.
This program can be a one time promotion or a long term strategy as a product leader.
Manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers can also earn credits by purchasing products and services from through the program.

How do members join:
Joining the loyalty program is free and performed online through a simple email, password and username registration process.

How do they earn credits:
• In store; by purchasing items with carbon credit coupons attached to them.
Coupons can be handed out to customers for answering surveys in the store or one the street or for being a specific customer of the day, week or month.
• Online; credits can be earned from a variety of tasks in the online community such as interacting with marketing email, purchasing items from the community store or by purchasing items from affiliated websites.
Members can also sell items in the community store with credits attached to them.
• As gifts; credits can be purchased for or earned as gifts from other members, retailers and manufacturers.
• Affiliated memberships; where possible, transactions from other loyalty/membership programs can also earn carbon credits in the program.

How the credits are valued:
One credit has a value of $0.01, EG: 5 credits = 5c, 100 credits = $1.00 etc.

How do members redeem their credits:
Members redeem their credits online by entering the serial numbers from each coupon, this credits the member with the appropriate credits which they can then redeem for trees at a rate of 500 credits per tree, planted.
As per http://www.CarbonZero.co.nz calculations, 1 tree eliminates 1000 CO2-e kg which is equivalent to 4,248 kilometres of carbon neutral driving based on a 2 – 2.9 litre diesel vehicle.

How is my reward verified:
A certificate is issued to the member for every tree planted in their name.
These trees are planted by various environmental organizations such as NZ Forest and Bird Society and ECO NZ in designated areas such as schools and parks.

How can members make a public statement:
Members can choose to display the number of credits they have earned and the number of trees planted in their membership username in the online community Honour Roll for all to see.

125 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 15 Jul 11 12:54 PM
Interesting concept:
>> 1 tree eliminates 1000 CO2-e kg which is equivalent to 4,248 kilometres of carbon neutral driving based on a 2 – 2.9 litre diesel vehicle.

Is this over the lifetime of the tree ?

What happens when the tree is destroyed, eg burnt, decayed, milled into timber for a house, then later the house is torn down and the wood sent to landfill.
Any sequestered carbon from your tree is ultimately released back to the air, albeit at a later date in the future.

Unless your mythical tree survives for ever, or another tree is planted in its place in perpetuity, the net effect you are basing your plan on is ultimately flawed and zero CO2 is eliminated.

Cheers
Mike

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 15 Jul 11 8:30 PM
Hi Mike, yes this distance is over the life of the tree.

And yes as the trees are planted in public access locations such as parks, beaches and schools there is the certainty that a number will be damaged and destroyed.

To cover this the program is geared so members can earn sufficient credits to plant enough trees to compensate for all the CO2 they help generate.

The whole program is run through purpose built social networking software.

Regards,
Doug



125 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 16 Jul 11 11:43 AM
Sorry Doug, I'm not convinced, seems to me from a science perspective that any investors planting trees to offset CO2 emissions at best provides a feel good factor for those doing the investing or creating the CO2.

Unless your scheme can guarantee to lock up the carbon at the end of the trees natural life, whether it be 200 or more years into the future, then it will just not work, the carbon will be released back into the atmosphere, achieving nothing. The money spent has lined someones pockets for naught.

The carbon cycle used to be taught in schools and person with a science background would know this. Seems to me our dummed down populace are getting sucked into these schemes without knowing the full facts.

A more effective solution is to reduce the CO2 in the first instance from industry or source. Money spent on that endeavor will have a positive effect and actually achieve something.

Cheers
Mike

95 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 16 Jul 11 12:08 PM
Mike,
Apologies for the rudimentary question but can you answer this.
At the end of a tree's life how does the stored carbon get released? Is it only if the tree is burnt? or does it get released over time as it breaks down. Is it possible that the caron get trapped within the tree a little longer if used in construction or furniture for example? In which case the carbon could be trapped for say 20 years as a live tree and then a further 100 years afterwards??


125 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 16 Jul 11 2:14 PM
The trees carbon is released by, burning, natural decomposition by bacteria, fungi; manufacturing timber products from the tree extend the period many years until this process occurs, eg house construction, but even houses get pulled down at some point and the treated timber sent to landfill.

Of course by then the people running these schemes have long gone with your money.

Unless the wood is reduced to carbon (charcoal), by heating in a low oxygen atmosphere then buried in a dry location, which will extend the process by many thousands of years. Note the word extend, at some point the inevitable will occur.

Thus in my opinion planting trees to offset carbon created by industry etc is an absolute waste of time.

However I'm all for planting trees, as any use of the timber is carbon neutral. But it is a scam to do this to offset CO2 emissions from other processes.


94 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 17 Jul 11 9:53 AM
Hi Mike, like you, I am also all for planting trees. I am also pro cutting them down and burning them.

This whole C02 thing is a total crock in my opinion.

Carbon is the building block of all life on this planet, and while our attention is manipulated to concentrate on C02 as the "baddie", we are ignoring the real pollution issues.

If anyone thinks that governments are pushing this carbon scheme because they care about a cleaner planet, I suggest that they are seriously deluded.

This is a business model, pure and simple, and we the people are the ones who will pay, pay and pay while no measurable man-made C02 differences will be accurately recorded.. Why? because it is impossible to measure what miniscule difference in Co2 levels are caused by humans. End of story.

472 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 18 Jul 11 9:12 AM
Hello 'nofear'and 'Solar Mike',

I believe in researching both sides of an argument, so although I completely disagree with Doug, I hope you both have noticed how restrained I have been in my questions. This has given Doug a fair platform to present his ‘business plan’, so now for some criticism.

I consider all such ‘green’ financial opportunities, to be an intentional $$$ ‘rip-off’ as practiced by Al Gore or just a naive following of the IPCC failing hypothesis, as I suspect is supported by Doug.

You both know that Co2 is a non-polluting, benign trace gas essential for growing our food and that I consider the ideal atmospheric content to be about 700ppmv (Co2 atmospheric concentration has been far greater than this many times previously in the aeons of world history).
If we can manage to get it up to this level, by human burning of fossil fuels, then we will then be able to grow our C4 grains about 49% faster than at present to feed our burgeoning population.
(Source: Idso May 2007).
We are going to need this result as I believe we are now experiencing a cooling world entering another Dalton / Maunder minimum.

So you put it very succinctly ‘nofear' – I agree exactly with each of your statements.

Incidentally, I am in a forestation programme, that for the cost of $6400 per ‘share’, in 12 years, I will have an estimated return of $58,000 (inflation adjusted) if log prices appreciate at the traditional rate of 7.1% to 12.4% compounding.
Sure there is some risk with the returns, but then I achieve a return well in excess of what Doug is promoting by growing my ‘share’ which is 46 trees, chopping them down, using the wood and replanting a sustainable resource.

Rex

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 18 Jul 11 11:20 AM
Hi Rex, No Fear and Solar Mike, thank you all for your valued input here.

I do not disagree with any of you as to how to clean up the atmosphere as I am no expert here.

I am not an Al Gore supporter either and believe there is a lot of mismanaged information in the wrong hands.

However, based on your comments I have re-written my explanation of the program and would like to get feed back on it now from you all.

_________________________________________

Eco Points Reward Program

“A loyalty program where the reward is a tree and the earth is the recipient”

What is it and what does it do:
This is an environmental loyalty program where members earn Eco points for purchasing specific items from participating retailers.
Members redeem these points for trees that are planted by various environmental organizations in designated areas such as schools and parks.
Members are issued with a certificate in their name for each tree planted.

How do members join:
Joining the program is free and performed online through a simple email, password and username registration process.

How do members participate:
Members purchase items that have Eco points coupons attached stating the number of points earned with its purchase.
These coupons have a serial number printed on them that when entered into the Eco points website credits the amount of points to the members account.
Members can also earn points by performing various tasks online such as interacting with marketing email, answering surveys or as gifts from other members.

How do members redeem their points:
Members redeem their points online at a rate of 500 points per tree and select the location where the tree is to be planted.
The types of trees available will vary by location as they are based on the planting programs of the schools and organizations that receive them.

How do businesses join the program:
Joining this full service program is free with the completion of the online registration process.

How do businesses participate:
Businesses purchase coupons printed with a set number of Eco points and attach them to various items.
This program can be promoted in store as a one time event, as a short or long term strategy for a brand leader or online as a survey or in email campaigns.

How can members make a public statement:
Members can choose to display the number of points they have earned and the number of trees they have had planted in the online community Honour Roll for all to see.


94 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 19 Jul 11 10:07 PM
Hi kioskbiz,
your intentions seem noble. I assuming that your key objective is to have more trees planted? If so I applaud your efforts to come up with an idea. It is way more than I have done

The only qualms I have with your idea is that it incorporates the belief of "carbon neutral", which in itself, by association, (imo) gives credence to the nonsense (imo) of "evil" C02 emissions, global warming and man- made climate change.

I can plant trees without having to tell the world how good I am. I do understand that some corporates crave this attention. Some feel the need for this while their core business rapes and pillages elsewhere. If they go "a planting" they will make sure it doesn't go un noticed or unrewarded in some way.. One could argue that it doesn't matter...as long as some trees got planted the end result is worth it.

Look, it is not your fault that i have a problem with loyalty programmes / cards. It conjures up (for me) the exploitation, lack of unilateral fair and true discount of supermarket goods, onselling of buying and spending information to third parties and other bastards, , cheaper fuel discounts by offshore supermarkets at major offshore petrol stations in opposition to the smaller independents (in Australia at least) ...bla bla bla.

I am not a typical customer, so I am the wrong person to offer feedback. I hate loyalty programmes, flyblown card,, onecard, et al. I want a retailers best discount price without strings attached and no hoops to jump through. plus I try to buy NZ made and non chain store, preferring to direct money locally for locals even when it means paying more. (Way cheaper in the long run and it may give my children a job)

Given that Nature so wonderfully ensures that a single tree produces enough seed to to grow hundreds, if not thousands more, how easy would it be to just propagate seedlings and give them away and encourage plantings...no carbon offset nonsense, no carbon neutral bla bla and no trumpet blowing. Instead just quietly getting it done and promoting the ideal of " plant a tree and feel good". We already have an Arbour Day.

Perhaps the above could be, or is already a school fund raiser?

I'll make just one suggestion...no more pines... please!

All the very best o you

22 posts
Re: Carbon Neutral reward program 
Posted 20 Jul 11 7:00 AM
Hi No Fear, this is as you suspect, an exercise in planting more trees.

It is a feel good program where people can have trees planted who would otherwise not get anywhere near a paddock or swamp that needs them.

I am happy with the way the climate is, it is cyclical and it changes, I just want to see more trees where they should be.

This program benefits schools as they not only get free trees to plant, the students get a practical learning experience.

Schools also benefit to the tune of $1.00 per tree that they plant - this is paid for by the companies supporting the program.

Schools get to select the trees they want from a list provided to them for each region.

regards,
Doug

 

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