LaunchDarkly takes an active role in turning its business success into local and global good. Through its LaunchDarkly Foundation, the company contributes both money and employee time to impact its key initiatives of education, housing, and climate. Climate is of particular concern to the company since the impacts of climate change disproportionately affect communities of color, those with low incomes, and people who are unhoused.
“Climate change is an existential threat to life as we know it on Earth, and the poorest and most vulnerable people will be the first to suffer,” the company stated in a related blog post. “Climate change is one of the three focus areas of the LaunchDarkly Foundation, and carbon removal seems like an effective way to help support that.”
LaunchDarkly originally purchased carbon offsets to become climate neutral in 2020. However, after digging deeper into the challenges and scale required to offset carbon through reforestation, it decided that carbon removal was a better option. But carbon removal technology was maturing at too slow a pace, so LaunchDarkly searched for a partner that could both impact climate change and advance this important new technology.
To fulfill its climate impact goals, LaunchDarkly chose Stripe Climate for its focus on carbon removal. Stripe Climate lets platforms easily contribute a fraction of revenue to help scale emerging carbon removal technologies, either through one-off invoices or via recurring contributions. Platforms can then share climate commitments with customers and be assured 100% of all contributions are directed to scientifically evaluated projects. For carbon removal companies, most of which are early stage and operating at a small scale, Stripe acts as an early customer to help these companies prove commercial viability and attract more interest and investment. For 11 of the 14 supported carbon removal companies, Stripe Climate was their very first customer.
“Stripe Climate agrees to pre-purchase the carbon removal at the market price,” the blog post further explained. “This price is often high, as these organizations are very early in their development and operating at a small scale… These purchases lay the foundation for proving the commercial viability of this market, allowing investors and entrepreneurs to move into the space.”
LaunchDarkly explained why it decided to partner with Stripe Climate:
- Stripe is helping lower the cost of carbon removal by supporting companies as they learn how to build, scale, and commercialize carbon removal.
- Stripe recognizes the sustainable benefits of carbon removal over nature-based carbon offsets and the need to make more and faster progress on climate change.
- Stripe puts 100% of contributions to work without taking commissions or adding fees, ensuring more impact with every dollar donated.
Since launching Stripe Climate in October 2021, LaunchDarkly has contributed to support the adoption and advancement of carbon removal technologies. It’s a perfect fit for the LaunchDarkly Foundation as it uses its resources to be a force for good. LaunchDarkly wanted to add its generous contributions to programs that could make a large and sustainable difference in how climate change is addressed. Stripe Climate provides promising carbon removal initiatives with early support as they develop their technologies into scalable businesses.
In a blog post, LaunchDarkly wrote: “These purchases [by Stripe Climate] provide a critical demand signal in the market.”
100% of contributions go directly to carbon removal projects
LaunchDarkly understands its business has a carbon footprint due to the energy needed to run servers and fuel employee flights around the globe as it conducts business. Once it determined carbon offsets were not enough, it decided to partner with Stripe Climate to ensure 100% of its contributions went to pre-vetted carbon removal projects.
LaunchDarkly highlighted: “Stripe Climate acts as a pass-through vehicle and takes 0% commission. 100% of the LaunchDarkly Foundation’s contribution goes towards carbon removal. This was the only way we found that allows us to direct money toward carbon removal.”
Diversified climate change impact
The LaunchDarkly Foundation supports an array of climate, education, and housing initiatives. Partnering with Stripe Climate expands the company’s impact by helping to develop sustainable carbon removal technologies in addition to LaunchDarkly’s existing support of Earth-friendly organizations focused on healthy oceans and planting trees.
In an article explaining its move to support carbon removal, LaunchDarkly wrote: “We’re funding direct carbon capture through Stripe Climate instead to help lower the cost of carbon removal and make it more scalable. We think this will ultimately have a greater impact on climate change than offsetting our company’s carbon emissions via carbon offsets.”
Stripe Climate’s strategy of investing in carbon removal is a critical and novel way to combat climate change. Slowing down or even eliminating carbon emissions will not make enough of a difference to the climate in a human timeframe.