carbon neutral

What does it take to go carbon neutral as a business?

carbon neutralAs a global network of successful entrepreneurs, EO is proud of its members’ commitment to doing business for good. A vast number of our members are capitalizing on their business success in order to tackle the world’s greatest obstacles. Who better to move our world forward toward greater sustainability than today’s greatest innovators? 

Karsten Warrink is just one example of an EO member who is driving positive change through his business. As the founder and CEO of Ambermedia—a media company based in Berlin, Germany—Karsten has been working toward carbon neutrality for a decade.

Carbon neutrality, often referred to as “CO2-neutrality” or “net-zero carbon,” is the balance between emitting carbon and absorbing carbon from the atmosphere. 

He recently shared some of the changes and inventions his team has initiated. 

When did Amber Media start its journey toward CO2-neutral status? 

We started 10 years ago by using only alternative energy in our offices. Over recent years, my team and I always thought about reducing our carbon footprint and waste footprint.

At the beginning of 2020 we decided to finally kick off our Greenamber initiative and go public with it. When we heard about the EO’s initiative to support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, we felt on the right path. We hope that many other EO members join forces.

What changes have you made to your offices to become CO2 neutral?

The first step was to switch to alternate energy 10 years ago. We only use electricity from regenerative energy sources.

Second, we reduced our waste footprint and switched some of our media formats to biodegradebale products. We also invented alternative media formats with electric screens on cargo bikes.

The third step was Greenamber compensating all CO2 from the offices and all of our campaigns.

What changes have you made in campaigns to become CO2 neutral? 

Two years ago we invented the Amber LED BIKE with a 360° videoscreen on a mobile cargobike and filed a patent for it.

With this media format, we can inform European customers about products in every part of the city without any carbon exhaustion. The screens also run on green energy.

We are also looking for new technologies to use in the future—fuel cell and electric cars are an important option for us.

Tell us about the Great Green Wall. How does Ambermedia support it?

An EO member who is active in Africa posted a video about the Great Green Wall on social media. I watched it and was very excited about the idea.

On one hand, it is planting trees to reduce desertification and lower carbon impact. It is also a cross-nation initiative among several African countries and supportive countries. I love the idea of people and nations working together to solve urgent problems and make the earth a better place.

What is the reaction of employees and clients to your CO2 neutral initiative?

Greenamber is bonding our team even closer. We are all very excited to go even further with Greenamber and invest more money in carbon-reducing projects.

Our clients, the press and even our competitors have been inspired. (One of our competitors copied our press release almost totally. So, it’s one more company. Even better!)

What future actions are planned for the Ambergreen initiative?

Right now we compensate our carbon production by 200 percent. This means we double the official CO2 price. In the next years, we are going to raise the price even higher and the clients will participate in the amount. Until now, we haven’t involved the clients.

What will you share with entrepreneurs around the world who are interested in being environmentally proactive but aren’t sure how to start?

Talk to your peers, your team and EO members. I think within EO and especially the EO Accelerator program, we have lots of smart entrepreneurs and innovative companies to inspire you.

Find your own way. There is no right or wrong. Every little thing you do to reduce CO2, waste, etc., is a step in the right direction.

Karsten Warrink is a member of the EO Germany-Berlin chapter. He founded Ambermedia in 2002. He is passionate about inventing new ways to advertise and communicate.



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