EQ Investors founder and chair has launched a platform for investors to make regular small donations to charities mitigating climate change
John Spiers (pictured), who is also CEO of the wealth manager’s charitable arm, the EQ Foundation, has launched new giving platform Tythe, which features the portfolio Climate Action Charity Portfolio.
Within this are 14 charities that are working towards climate change solutions; these include the Blue Marine Foundation, Clean Air Task Force, Rainforest Trust UK, SolarAid, Sustainable Food Trust, Trees for Cities and ClientEarth to name a few.
Spiers said: “The G7 summit in Cornwall has helped to remind us that averting catastrophic climate change is a massive challenge, requiring concerted efforts by all of us. Modifying our own lifestyles is the best place to start but after that many will want to offset their remaining carbon footprint. Tythe, the innovative new platform launched by The EQ Foundation, has curated a list of 14 high impact charities that are helping to solve the problem.”
He added that for the average UK adult there are websites offering ‘solutions’ that offset carbon footprints costing less than £1 per tonne, therefore costing them £15 per annum to “wash away all carbon sins”. However, he said, this is “completely unrealistic”.
“If it was that cheap then the problem would have been solved by now. Sadly, these options are the equivalent of fool’s gold and leading people into a false sense of comfort,” he said.
“The price of carbon on professional markets, used by high polluting companies to buy offsets, is trading at more than £40/tonne. That price would amount to more like £500/annum per person to offset and typically much more if you have an affluent lifestyle. We suggest that is an appropriate baseline for anyone who genuinely wants to make a difference.”
Spiers added the Tythe Climate Action Portfolio makes it easier for investors to contribute to charities that have been through “rigorous due diligence”.
“We favour a portfolio approach, combining proven programmes such as afforestation and reforestation with more speculative enterprises developing carbon capture technology or sources of clean energy as well as initiatives to reduce our personal footprints by education and developing new sources of protein.”