'Chooose' Startup Helps Companies Reduce Their Carbon Footprint

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May. 17 2019, Updated 9:55 a.m. ET

While everyone contributes to global warming on some level because they release CO2, a massive amount of pollution comes directly from large companies. A growing movement requires companies to mitigate their environmental damage by either choosing better practices or buying CO2 quotas which allow them to pollute. Since there are many cheap quotas available, it’s easier for many companies to opt for the latter option instead of finding solutions. 

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Chooose is a Norwegian company that aims to solve this problem by making it harder for companies to have an "easy out." The company works to create carbon neutrality by purchasing and eliminating CO2 emission quotas. Quotas are essentially emission permits that industries need to release a certain amount of CO2 every year. Each permit equals about one ton of CO2.  

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Chooose’s approach keeps companies from buying more quotas when they run out since there is a limited amount of quotas available. Fewer quotas mean less ability to pollute. As a result, this encourages businesses to invest in environmental solutions for their practices and become carbon neutral. 

To make a meaningful impact on the environment, Chooose focuses on rising CO2 levels because it's a manageable target. Much of the increased CO2 comes directly from human activities such as burning fossil fuels. While individuals collectively emit plenty of CO2, Chooose argues that even if individuals stopped their environmentally harmful activities such as driving, eating meat, or flying, they still would only make a small dent in the effort to keep overall carbon emissions down. Instead, Chooose focuses their efforts on companies who create massive pollution to make a substantial change.   

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But how is Chooose able to get these quotas? The company is able to purchase permits because it is registered in the official quota registry and has access to the closed EU ETS trading market. The company collaborates with the UN and EU to operate within the system and take back control of how large businesses can affect the environment. While this system may seem like an unusual angle, Chooose’s goal is not to take a political stance. Rather, they hope to reduce CO2 emissions legally without having to wait for politicians to take action. 

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Chooose encourages people to join forces and make an impact outside of their personal realm. The company offers a subscription model where members who want to help mitigate climate change can contribute to quota purchases through their membership platform and consequently have a direct effect on lowering CO2 emissions. The low cost, high impact model allows people anywhere to make a significant change with ease.  

While complying with the official market program, Chooose has so far blocked thousands of tons of CO2 from being released. Their efforts to take action and do something about climate change is already working, and people are noticing. The company was awarded startup of the year and is one of the finalists at Extreme Tech Challenge. 

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