OUR BRAND VALUES
The new brand BE CLIMATE is the expression of the philosophy by which we have lived for decades: “Partner for Generations”. The entire Port team feels a close connection with all customers and business partners worldwide. We know that only together can we achieve success. In addition, we commit to the careful handling of all natural resources. In other words: We preserve them for the following generations.
BE CLIMATE is the new climate neutral brand by Port International and the first brand to offer CO2 neutral fruit and vegetables. We keep our finger on the pulse and have a good grasp of what affects people and markets – which is apparent from us being the pioneer who already introduced Organic and Fairtrade products to the fruit industry at the end of the 1990s.
We put our cards on the table. Because climate neutrality needs transparency. We honestly confess that we still have a long way ahead of us, but we promise to walk it with conviction and ensure transparency for everybody. BE CLIMATE offers a QR code or ID number, which every customer can easily use to check the concrete contribution he or she made when they decided to buy our climate neutral products.
WHAT DOES CLIMATE NEUTRAL MEAN?
CALCULATION: CO2 FOOTPRINT
CO2 balance of the company and its products
REDUCTION: CO2 EMISSIONS
Climate protection strategy to reduce CO2 emissions
COMPENSATION: CO2 REMAINDER
Support of carbon offset projects
THE JOURNEY: CALCULATION. REDUCTION. COMPENSATION.
To us, climate neutral means that as a company, we act in a climate friendly way and offer our customers products whose CO2 emissions are compensated with the help of internationally recognised carbon offset projects, making it effectively possible for clients and consumers to protect our climate in an easy and comprehensible manner. To achieve this, we calculate the total CO2 emissions caused by fruit and vegetables from their origin to the point of sale and their final disposal, taking into account cultivation, packing process, logistics and the disposal of packaging materials. We then reduce CO2 emissions wherever possible and compensate the remaining inevitable emissions by supporting certified carbon offset projects.
Of course, we know that climate neutral products are only the first step, which must be followed by many more. But this is a step we can take right now and for us, that’s what counts! Climate neutral fruit and vegetables, too, will continue to cause emissions. Therefore, in future, we will make it our goal to motivate our partners to look for innovative and climate friendly alternatives so that emissions shall be reduced to a minimum, not only inside Port International, but all along the supply chain.
THE CARBON OFFSET PROJECTS
Clean drinking water in Malawi
Two billion people in the world have no access to clean drinking water. Many families have to boil their drinking water over an open fire, resulting in CO2 emissions and deforestation. By providing safe drinking water through the repair of damaged and the drilling of additional new boreholes, the project in Kasungu, Malawi ensures, that households consume less firewood during the process of water purification. This way CO2 emissions can be avoided.
This project contributes to meet the electricity demand in Chile with renewable, clean and zero-emission power, displacing fossil-fuel based generation. The park consists of two wind farms with 57 wind turbines in total. Since wind energy is created without burning fossil fuels, it is considered emission-free. The growth of renewable energy production is essential to limiting global warming and securing energy supplies for the future.
FURTHER INFORMATION ON CLIMATE NEUTRALITY
Point of criticism: carbon compensation is not sufficient to contribute adequately to the globally agreed climate goals.
This is correct, we cannot save the climate with carbon compensation alone. We need a fundamental restructuring of the global economy, an uncompromising departure from all fossil fuels, much more energy-efficient production and transport processes, and probably even a new understanding of consumption.
Until these steps are implemented, however, carbon compensation is a crucial element of climate protection. With the current state of the art, it is not possible to switch to renewable energies completely and reduce emissions to zero. It is therefore equally correct that without compensation, i.e. without climate neutral products and companies, we cannot achieve the Paris climate targets.
Point of criticism: the market for solar, hydro and wind power would progress even without the mechanism of climate neutrality.
Without the support of climate protection, clean energy from renewable energy sources would be possible mostly in those countries, which already have the corresponding technologies or can afford them – i.e. the rich countries. In regions where climate protection projects are typically developed, the situation would be quite different as these are usually emerging or developing countries.
This is precisely the principle of the Clean Development Mechanism from the Kyoto Protocol: to enable sustainable development in poorer countries with the support of the industrial nations.
Point of criticism: companies only compensate for their better conscience without first attempting to avoid and reduce, as is required by the principle of climate neutrality.
Holistic climate protection includes avoiding as much CO2 emissions as possible and reducing the volume of unavoidable emissions. The emissions that remain in the end must be offset in order to achieve climate neutrality.
Numerous companies that are committed to the goal of climate neutrality implement this approach, including Schneider Schreibgeräte, Trodat, Sympatex and many more. Critics are often either unaware of this or the reduction targets achieved are not sufficient for them. However, people often forget that a distinction must be made between short-term and long-term goals in the reduction process. In the short term, most companies can only reduce a very small proportion of their emissions. They are too dependent on existing technologies and their suppliers (most companies buy about 80 percent of their emissions from their suppliers). In the long term, however, a great deal is possible, and many companies are meeting these challenges through long-term climate protection strategies, clear and in some cases science-based objectives, and close coordination with suppliers (e.g. CDP Supply Chain Initiative).
It is therefore short-sighted to demonise the instrument of offsetting in general just because the critics feel that the aspect of avoidance and reduction is sometimes neglected. By doing so, the public might get the impression that it would be better not to offset emissions at all. But this is wrong: the more companies – and private individuals – offset emissions by supporting climate protection projects, the better it is for the climate because fewer emissions effectively enter the atmosphere.
Point of criticism: projects do not save any CO2.
Anyone who offsets CO2 and supports a climate protection project in return must check very carefully what kind of project it is, or work with a partner who knows the market for climate protection projects and makes an informed pre-selection.
There are a number of internationally recognised and reliable standards for climate protection projects; they are regularly monitored by independent organisations such as TÜV, SGS or PwC who determine in retrospect the exact amount of CO2 emissions actually saved. Projects with these standards already exist and have demonstrably saved CO2 in the past. These include the Gold Standard, the Verified Carbon Standard, Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standard, Plan Vivo, Social Carbon Standard, and Fairtrade Climate Standard.
Even though there are also dubious projects, such as those collecting money in advance to invest it in CO2 savings at some later date, this does not effect in any way the good quality of the projects which were developed and calculated in a reliable and legitimate manner.
The possibility of carbon compensation encourages behaviour that should be stopped.
Companies that are climate neutral or offer climate neutral products have addressed their own CO2 emissions and developed an awareness of their footprint. They know which processes and products are climate friendly or damaging and can assess their actions better. They take responsibility for the emissions they cause.
Of course, there are also products known to be harmful to the climate which must be replaced by climate friendly alternatives in the long term if we are to achieve our climate goals – disposable articles made of plastic or short-haul flights are criticised in this context, among others. In any case, there are already numerous social debates on how to regulate them more strictly or ban them completely. Climate neutrality will not stop these necessary processes. Consumers, too, expect products that are inherently consistent and credible so in future, a stronger impetus and improved steering effects will have to come from politics and public pressure.
For some, it is unclear how the money for carbon compensation is actually used.
Carbon compensation is not a donation but a service. As opposed to donations, the customer receives a concrete equivalent value, namely the compensation of a precisely determined amount of CO2 for which they pay a certain price. Different projects have different prices per ton of CO2, depending on the project region, the technology, the certification standard, etc. The price for a project can also change over time.
The efficiency of the use of funds from climate protection projects is generally considered to be very high. Moreover, most projects are not exclusively financed by the sale of the certificates. Instead, certificates close a financing gap without which a project could not be implemented. The sale of certificates is therefore the retroactive financing of an existing project. Carbon compensation has already taken place and the projects have already been implemented.